Grande Ronde Hospital offers free and secure medication disposal

By on Thursday, February 11th, 2021 in More Top Stories Northeastern Oregon News

LA GRANDE – Grande Ronde Hospital has made disposal of expired or unwanted medicine more convenient than ever. As of Monday, February 1, anyone may dispose of their prescription or over-the-counter medications by depositing them in the bright blue, secured MED-Project medication drop-off kiosk located near the first-floor elevator in the lobby of Grande Ronde Hospital. All medications collected are disposed of securely and responsibly.  

The MED-Project kiosk allows for proper disposal of unwanted or expired medications in a way that is secure, confidential, and convenient. Proper disposal removes unnecessary medications from the home decreasing the risk of misuse or abuse and prevents dangerous disposal practices. In some instances, when proper disposal is unavailable, medications may be flushed down the toilet, which causes contaminants to infiltrate groundwater.  

Wendy Roberts, Community Benefit Officer, and Brian Harris, Pharmacy Manager, played integral roles in establishing the kiosk at Grande Ronde Hospital. 

“We’ve been working toward this day for the past year-and-a-half,” Harris said. “We approached several other agencies early on, all of which required annual fees to provide this service to the community. About six months ago, MED-Project approached us with a convenient, zero-cost solution. It was a no-brainer.”  

“This kiosk fills a need in the community as identified under the Behavior Health Well-Being goal in our FY2020-FY2022 Community Benefit Plan,” said Roberts. “We are so pleased to offer a MED-Project kiosk, and hope to see a positive impact from the added availability of proper medication disposal in a way that is safe, secure, confidential, convenient, and free-of-cost.”  

Anyone interested in disposing of unwanted or expired prescription or over-the-counter medicines should follow these disposal instructions as provided by MED-Project:  

∙ Check the medicine’s packaging. If there are specific instructions on the label, package, or insert, please follow those instructions.  

∙ Remove all personally identifiable information on medication labels or packaging.  ∙ Keep medicines in their original container or a sealed bag.  

∙ Review the following list of items that can and cannot be disposed of at the kiosk: 

ACCEPTED: Medications in any dosage form, except for those listed below, still in their original container or sealed bag. 

NOT ACCEPTED: Herbal remedies, vitamins, supplements, cosmetics, other personal care products, batteries, mercury-containing thermometers, medical devices, sharps, and illicit drugs. 

When bringing medications to the Hospital for disposal, be aware that any person entering the building must complete the COVID-19 screening process per current Hospital policy.  

Using the kiosk is as simple as using a post-office drop box – use the handle to open the door of the kiosk. Drop your medication inside the box, and close the lever. That’s all there is to it.  An additional MED-Project kiosk was installed on February 1 at Red Cross Drug Store in downtown La Grande. For more information about MED-Project, visit