Back to Top Skip to main content

New year, new medicine cabinet

The Military Health System has a drug take back program to help service members and their families dispose of their medications safely. The Department of Justice also has a national take-back initiative. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Valerie Monroy) The Military Health System has a drug take back program to help service members and their families dispose of their medications safely. The Department of Justice also has a national take-back initiative. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Valerie Monroy)

Recommended Content:

Drug Take Back Program | Substance Abuse

Take a look in your medicine cabinet. Are all of the medications up to date? Do your doctor and pharmacist have accurate records of what medicines you are currently taking? Now is the time to take charge of your medications and get organized.

Step 1: Pitch Unused or Expired Medication

Many of our medicine cabinets have bottles of prescribed and over-the-counter medications that are expired or that we no longer use. Safely disposing of these medications lowers the risk of misuse and environmental contamination. There are several programs available to help. The Military Health System has a drug take back program to help service members and their families dispose of their medications safely. The Department of Justice also has a national take-back initiative. Many local police stations also have similar programs.

Step 2: Update Your Information

Anything you put into your body can affect it, including prescribed drugs, over-the-counter medication and other supplements. It’s important to keep your doctor and pharmacy aware of everything you’re taking to prevent any negative interactions. Review all of your medications, supplements and vitamins, make a list, and bring it with you to your next appointment. Real Warriors offers tips on how to talk about psychological health with your provider. The article is a great resource to make sure you have everything you need for any doctor appointment.

Step 3: Identify Risks

Understanding how your body responds to a drug is vital. Doctors recommend limiting or abstaining from alcohol with many medications. The Human Performance Resource Center outlines the dangers of mixing prescribed and over-the-counter drugs with supplements. The website also takes a look at dietary supplements and offers resources to help understand which are safe. Prescription abuse is making headlines across the country and is a serious concern. Learn how to identify the symptoms and how to get help. Real Warriors details how misusing prescription drugs can hinder a service member’s readiness and judgment.

Step 4: Order Refills

Going without medication is risky, so plan ahead to make sure that you never run out of the medication you need. TRICARE and Express Scripts make it easy for you to manage your prescriptions at home or on the go. TRICARE has four options for filling prescriptions:

  • Military pharmacies will fill prescriptions for free for service members.
  • Home delivery is an inexpensive way to fill prescriptions that you take regularly.
  • TRICARE network pharmacies are another option — there are over 58,000 retail pharmacies in the United States or its territories.
  • Non-network pharmacies are available, but you will have to pay full price to fill prescriptions and then file a claim for reimbursement.

A health care provider should always monitor your prescription changes. Never start, stop or change dosage without consulting your doctor.

Disclaimer: Re-published content may have been edited for length and clarity. Read original post.

You also may be interested in...

To drink, or not to drink

Article
11/9/2018
If you are battling substance abuse, consider attending an alcohol-free holiday party or host your own alcohol-free small gathering

If you are battling substance abuse, consider attending an alcohol-free holiday party or host your own alcohol-free small gathering

Recommended Content:

Substance Abuse

Drug-monitoring innovations help providers help their patients

Article
8/6/2018
Two Military Health System innovations are helping to ensure best practices for patients with pain, and for patients who’ve been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Curt Beach)

Focus is on management of pain and PTSD

Recommended Content:

Innovation | Substance Abuse | Posttraumatic Stress Disorder

DHA PI 6490.01: BH Treatment and Outcomes Monitoring

Policy

This Defense Health Agency-Procedural Instruction (DHA-PI), based on the authority of References (a) and (b), and in accordance with the guidance of References (c) through (k): a. Establishes the Defense Health Agency’s (DHA) procedures for the collection and analysis of BH outcome data. b. Addresses how DoD will standardize BH outcome data collection to: assess variations in mental health and substance use care among in-garrison medical treatment facilities (MTFs) and clinics; assess the relationship of treatment protocols and practices to BH outcomes; and identify barriers to provider implementation of evidence-based clinical guidance approved by DoD. c. Designates the Army as the DoD lead Service for maintenance and sustainment of the Behavioral Health Data Portal (BHDP) in specialty care mental health and substance use clinics, referred to collectively as BH clinics, until BHDP functionality can be integrated with GENESIS or another electronic health record (EHR) system managed by DHA. d. Designates DHA Information Operations (J-6) as lead on transitioning BHDP functional requirements related to outcomes monitoring to future EHR data collection platforms and processes.

There is hope

Article
7/12/2018
Medically assisted treatment for opioid use can break the cycle of addiction.

More than 350,000 deaths are attributed to opioid overdoses nationwide since 1999

Recommended Content:

Mental Health Care | Substance Abuse | Addiction | Mental Wellness

Life without liquor

Article
6/29/2018
There are 2.5 million alcohol-related deaths worldwide each year, according to the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence. (Courtesy photo)

One service member’s story of how he overcame a drinking problem

Recommended Content:

Mental Wellness | Substance Abuse

Progress in preventing opioid abuse, more needs to be done

Article
6/26/2018
Air Force Staff Sgt. Matthew Pick, with the 66th Security Forces Squadron, holds a nasal applicator and naloxone medication vial at Hanscom Air Force Base, Massachusetts. Naloxone is one of several medications designed to temporarily reverse the effects of an opioid overdose. Hanscom was the first Air Force installation to issue the drug to law enforcement personnel under permission of the base commander. (U.S. Air Force photo by Mark Herlihy)

The Military Health System has a shared responsibility in addressing the nation’s opioid epidemic

Recommended Content:

Substance Abuse

DHA PI 6025.04: Pain Management and Opioid Safety in the MHS

Policy

The purpose of our MHS Pain Management Campaign is to enable Clinical Communities to provide evidence-based pain management guided by clinical practice guidelines (CPGs): effectively treat acute and chronic pain; promote non-pharmacologic treatment; prevent acute pain from becoming chronic; and minimize use of opioids with appropriate prescribing only when indicated. The Pain Management Clinical Support Service achieves these ends through clinical improvements in pain care, clinician and patient education, and research. This Defense Health Agency-Procedural Instruction (DHA-PI) is a dual effort between the Pain Management Clinical Support Service and the Clinical Communities to achieve our stated purpose through implementation of the MHS Stepped Care Model.

DHA PI 6025.25: Military Health System (MHS) Drug Take Back (DTB) Program

Policy

This Defense Health Agency-Procedural Instruction (DHA-PI), based on the authority of References (a) and (b), and in accordance with the guidance of References (c) through (g): - Describes procedures for MHS organizations to offer beneficiaries the option of returning their controlled and non-controlled prescriptions and over-the-counter medications for disposal through a DTB program. The DTB program will provide an environmentally safe method for beneficiaries to properly and safely remove unused and expired medications from circulation, including medications that can be used for suicide or suicide attempts and have the potential for misuse, diversion, or accidental poisoning. - Details the tasks and procedures necessary to ensure successful implementation of the MHS DTB program within military Medical Treatment Facilities (MTFs).

The sobering reality of one drink too many

Article
1/16/2018
Some people follow the boozy holiday season with Dry January, an unofficial movement to abstain from alcohol for 31 days. But alcohol consumption is a year-round activity, and for some, a year-round problem that requires professional help. (U.S. Air Force photo illustration by Airman 1st Class Sahara. L. Fales)

Resolve to limit alcohol, experts recommend

Recommended Content:

Substance Abuse

Moving? Toss unwanted or expired medications appropriately

Article
6/9/2017
Many service members and their families are gearing up to move this summer. As you organize your house and belongings to prepare for your move, one area of your home you shouldn’t overlook is your medicine cabinet. (U.S. Navy photo)

With the Military Health System Drug Take Back program, you can safely and easily dispose of unwanted and expired medications at U.S. military pharmacies

Recommended Content:

Drug Take Back Program

Celebrate good times! No luck, charms or alcohol required

Article
3/17/2017
Marine Cpl. Edward Blodgett, wears a leprechaun hat at a regimental run in celebration of St. Patrick’s Day at Camp Pendleton, California. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Khoa Pelczar)

Unless you’ve been hiding under the Blarney Stone, you’ve seen the shamrocks — St. Patrick’s Day is upon us

Recommended Content:

Posttraumatic Stress Disorder | Traumatic Brain Injury | Substance Abuse

To drink or not to drink: Have a plan

Article
12/21/2016
USS John C. Stennis' crew and family members dance during a command holiday party. For someone concerned about alcohol intake or battling substance abuse, social events may seem threatening. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Jonathan Jiang)

For someone concerned about alcohol intake or battling substance abuse, social events may seem threatening

Recommended Content:

Substance Abuse | Integrative Wellness

Look Familiar?

Infographic
9/13/2016
Infographic showing a stash of prescription and OTC drugs...says "Look Familiar? Might be time to clean out your medicine cabinet."

If you have a stash of unused prescription or over-the-counter drugs, it might be time to clean out your medicine cabinet.

Recommended Content:

Drug Take Back Program

Military Health System Drug Take Back Option

Video
9/13/2016
Military Health System Drug Take Back Option

Watch this video to learn more about the Military Health System Drug Take Back option.

Recommended Content:

Drug Take Back Program

Drug Take Back Poster 1: Look Familiar?

Poster
9/12/2016

1 of 3 posters for the MHS Drug Take Back program.

Recommended Content:

Drug Take Back Program
<< < 1 2 > >> 
Showing results 1 - 15 Page 1 of 2

DHA Address: 7700 Arlington Boulevard | Suite 5101 | Falls Church, VA | 22042-5101

Some documents are presented in Portable Document Format (PDF). A PDF reader is required for viewing: Download a PDF Reader or learn more about PDFs.