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Drug Take Back Program

The Military Health System is establishing a Drug Take Back program to help beneficiaries properly dispose of their prescriptions and over-the-counter medications.

  • The program is available at all military pharmacies in United States and U.S. Territories.
  • Military pharmacies in all other overseas areas will operate under the medication disposal guidance of their host nations. 
Official MHS Seal with the text "MHS Drug Take Back"

Practicing good drug disposal habits protects you, your family, and your community. To safely dispose of unwanted, unused, or expired prescription drugs, you can now go to any military pharmacy in the U.S. or U.S. Territory. Military pharmacies offer one or both of the following Drug Take Back options:

  • Mail-in envelopes you can pick up and take with you, or
  • Secure bins where you can drop unwanted drugs onsite

To find out which drug take back option is offered, you can search for your military hospital or clinic online.

Resources and Materials

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DHA PI 6025.08: Pharmacy Enterprise Activity EA

Policy

This Defense Health Agency-Procedural Instruction (DHA-PI): a. Based on the authority of References (a) through (c), and in accordance with the guidance of References (d) through (g), establishes the Defense Health Agency’s (DHA) procedures to: (1) Exercise management responsibilities for Pharmacy Shared Service/EA functions in the Military Health System (MHS). This DHA-PI is binding on the MHS and supports the Director’s, DHA, responsibility to develop appropriate management models to maximize efficiencies in the activities carried out by DHA. (2) Recognize the Pharmacy Work Group (PWG) as the operational body to implement pharmacy strategies and programs per the Director’s, DHA, guidance. Also, develop strategic initiatives and business process models to optimize pharmacy operations and programs in accordance with Reference (e). (3) Promulgate guidance, define roles, assign responsibilities, and prescribe procedures for the development, coordination, execution, and implementation of standardized Pharmacy Operations and EA procedures within the MHS and Military Departments (MILDEPs). (4) Execute Pharmacy EA assigned responsibilities and functions, and in accordance with Reference (b), when needed, rely on advice and assistance of governance councils established by the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness and the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs (ASD(HA)), including senior representatives of the MILDEPs. (5) Provide DHA combat support agency pharmacy functions, in accordance with Reference (b), specifically involving support for operating forces engaged in planning for, or conducting, military operations, including support during conflict or in the conduct of other military activities related to countering threats to U.S. National Security. The Pharmacy EA innovatively manages and standardizes DoD pharmacy operations in a fiscally responsible manner to optimize readiness, improve health, and lower costs through better care. (6) Support baseline knowledge, skills, and abilities for each wartime pharmacy specialty, addressing gaps between peacetime and deployed operational requirements, in collaboration with the MILDEPs, and military Medical Treatment Facility (MTF) pharmacies. (7) Support programs for skills and knowledge assessments and provide for training/retraining opportunities, as needed, for each wartime pharmacy specialty for military MTF pharmacies. (8) Empower enterprise-level pharmacy clinical communities to define, prioritize, and implement “best-in-class” High Reliability Organization practices to enable readiness through decreasing variation, improving outcomes, and positively impacting healthcare in the MHS. (9) Support the scaling and reconfiguring of pharmacy capabilities required to support the forward operating environment; e.g., hospital ship, combat support hospitals, Expeditionary Medical Support. The Services’ Surgeons General will have deployed medical mission command over health services support of pharmacy resources and capabilities at various levels of command and at diverse locations. b. Transforms varied Tri-Service Pharmacy Operations approaches into a single, integrated DHA Pharmacy Program that standardizes pharmacy shared services and optimizes business processes as directed by the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2017, Section 702 (Reference (c)). c. Drives standardization of institutional and operational commands, sustains and improves medical readiness, creates value within the MHS, and achieves interoperability across platforms to deliver better health care to the warfighter, MHS beneficiaries, and build a medically ready force.

DHA PI 6025.07: Naloxone in the MTFs

Policy

This Defense Health Agency-Procedural Instruction (DHA-PI), based on the authority of References (a) through (c), and in accordance with the guidance of References (d) through (h), establishes the Defense Health Agency’s (DHA) procedures for prescribing and dispensing naloxone by pharmacists in MTFs to eligible beneficiaries, upon beneficiary request, or when the pharmacist determines the beneficiary meets the established criteria for being at risk for a life-threatening opiate overdose.

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).

Increases to TRICARE pharmacy copayments coming

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1/5/2018
TRICARE urges you to take command of your health care to enhance your TRICARE experience.

On Feb 1, 2018, copayments for prescription drugs at TRICARE Pharmacy Home Delivery and retail pharmacies will increase.

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Increases to TRICARE pharmacy copayments coming Feb. 1, 2018

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12/18/2017
TRICARE urges you to take command of your health care to enhance your TRICARE experience.

On Feb. 1, 2018, copayments for prescription drugs at TRICARE Pharmacy Home Delivery and retail pharmacies will increase.

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WBAMC pharmacist catches serious drug interaction

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11/27/2017
Dr. Anna Jewula, pharmacist, Department of Pharmacy, William Beaumont Army Medical Center, is recognized for her attentiveness in assisting a patient with a prescription order that contraindicated a previous prescription medication, avoiding a potentially serious drug interaction detrimental to the patient’s health (U.S. Army photo Marcy Sanchez)

Thanks to a pharmacist’s careful eye, one patient avoided a potentially deadly drug interaction

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Annual consent for automatic prescription refills begins Sept. 1

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8/31/2017
Beginning Sept. 1, 2017, Express Scripts will need annual consent from patients who want to receive automatic refills of their maintenance medications enrolled in TRICARE Pharmacy Home Delivery. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Alystria Maurer)

Beginning Sept. 1, 2017, Express Scripts will need annual consent from patients who want to receive automatic refills of their maintenance medications enrolled in TRICARE Pharmacy Home Delivery

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Moving? Toss unwanted or expired medications appropriately

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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

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Pain, pain, go away: Improving care and safety when managing pain

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5/15/2017
Recently published opioid therapy clinical practice guideline focuses aims to improve quality of care and patient safety when treating acute and chronic pain (U.S. Air Force Photo by Airman Valerie Monroy).

DoD and VA have released updated recommendations for providers managing patients’ acute and chronic pain using opioid therapy.

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New year, new medicine cabinet

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1/13/2017
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)

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National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day

Photo
10/20/2016
The Drug Enforcement Agency sponsors the National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, which lets people safely and securely dispose of potentially dangerous unused, unwanted and expired prescription drugs. (Courtesy graphic)

The Drug Enforcement Agency sponsors the National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, which lets people safely and securely dispose of potentially dangerous unused, unwanted and expired prescription drugs. (Courtesy graphic)

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.

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Military Health System Drug Take Back Option

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

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Drug Take Back Poster 1: Look Familiar?

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9/12/2016

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

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