Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 30 March 2020

Dubai campaign collects Dh12 million of unwanted drugs

Health officials call on patients to safely dispose of unwanted medication

A health campaign in Dubai collected Dh12 million of unwanted drugs in 2019. The National
A health campaign in Dubai collected Dh12 million of unwanted drugs in 2019. The National

A government campaign to collect unused medication for safe disposal reaped Dh12 million worth of prescription drugs last year.

The ‘clean your medicine cabinet’ initiative by Dubai Health Authority called on residents to donate unused drugs that were still in date for a safety check.

Those deemed safe were used by charities, while medication no longer effective were safely disposed of.

Dr Ali Sayed, director of DHA pharmaceutical services, hopes the campaign will encourage good practise in future.

“This year we hope that more families will come forward and help us in our mission to dispose of expired medications properly and to support charities that collect medications for the underprivileged,” he said.

“It does not take time and it is something that can help both the environment as well as those in need.

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“I encourage DHA patients to carry the medicines with them during their next scheduled appointment and to simply give it to the DHA pharmacy in that facility.”

From 2013 to 2019, the DHA campaign collected Dh29.5 million worth of medicines, some of which have been donated to UAE charities.

Drugs were collected at DHA pharmacies across all its primary healthcare centres and hospitals.

Expired medications are disposed of in line with international pharmaceutical safety guidelines, while experts evaluate the suitability of undated drugs.

“Flushing down your medication is harmful for the environment and pollutes the water and disposing of the medicines in the garbage pollutes the soil,” said Dr Sayed.

“The best way to dispose expired medications is to return the medicines to the pharmacy for safe disposal.”

Updated: January 14, 2020 06:26 PM

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