Health Products Stewardship Association

Returning Unused and expired medications in | Pharmacists

British Columbia

Medications for pain, your birth control pills or those tablets you bought for your trip …three years ago. If you look in your medicine cabinet, chances are you'll find medications that are expired or that you no longer need.

Luckily, you can now return these medications to a pharmacy in your community through a program offered by the health products industries called British Columbia Medications Return Program (BCMRP). When you drop off your medications, you'll not only ensure they're disposed of properly – you'll also keep them out of the wrong hands, preventing abuse or accidental ingestion – and protecting our environment in the process.


What's included?

BCMRP covers all prescription drugs, medications such as over-the-counter medications, including topical antibiotic and antifungal creams and natural health products that are orally ingested, such as vitamins and minerals, traditional Chinese medicines, herbal products, probiotics, amino acids and homeopathic medicines.

Most pharmacies have already been collecting expired or unused medications. With this program even more pharmacies will participate, making it easier than ever before for you to do the right thing. 

Download our "Take-it Back" pamphlet for more information.


Funding Mechanism

British Columbia Medications Return Program is administered by the Health Products Stewardship Association and funded by brand-owners selling medications in British Columbia. This program provides the health products industries with a collective means of adhering to the requirements of the British Columbia Recycling Regulation.

Recycling Hot Line/Recyclepedia

The Recycling Council of British Columbia (RCBC) is a multi-sectoral, non-profit, membership driven organization that promotes the principles of zero waste through information services, the exchange of ideas and research.

RCBC is Canada’s longest-serving recycling council. Since 1974 they have led B.C.’s progressive policy of Extended Producer Responsibility programs and other initiatives to find innovative ways to eliminate waste and decrease British Columbia's environmental footprint.

BC Recycles – Stewardship Agencies of BC


Don't Flush Us! - Medications



We are launching a new social media outreach campaign , in association with the Recycling Coucil of British Columbia.

For more information visit the links below and watch videos about #FAQFridays

BC Medications Return Program Plan- Consultation Notice
April 17, 2019 The Health Products Stewardship Association (HPSA) is conducting public consultations on the renewal of its Stewardship Plan for...


Note: Any of the following items that are unused, expired, in questionable condition, or missing labels

  • All Prescription drugs
  • Over-the-counter medications, oral dosage
  • Natural health products, oral dosage

Not Accepted

Please check with your pharmacist or household hazardous waste events for other products

  • Sharps, needles or syringes
  • Cosmetics
  • Empty pill bottles