Take Back Program

The Take Back program was launched in December 2009. North Dakota now offers two free programs for residents to dispose of unwanted medications – the Take Back program at participating law enforcement agencies, and the MedSafe program at participating pharmacies.

These programs give residents easy and convenient ways to dispose of unused and unwanted over-the-counter and prescription medicines, thereby helping to protect our state’s environment and keeping these drugs off the streets.

  • North Dakota is the only state in the nation operating free, year-round, state-wide prescription drug disposal programs at local law enforcement agencies and pharmacies.
  • As of April 11, 2018, more than 11 TONS (22,612 pounds) of unwanted and unused medications has been collected from the Take Back containers at local law enforcement agencies.

​Find your nearest Take Back and MedSafe location.

What is accepted

Unused or expired prescriptions and over-the-counter medications, including:

  • Pills, tablets, caplets (please remove product from the packaging);
  • Inhalers, nebulizer solutions, liquids and creams (leave IN the original container)
  • Controlled substances
    • Pain relief such as Vicodin, Hydrocodone, Demerol, OxyContin, fentanyl, etc.;
    • Anti-depressants, like Valium, Zoloft, Prozac, etc.;
    • Sleep aids, such as Ambien, Lunesta, Sonata, etc. 

Not accepted

  • Sharps (syringes, lancets), thermometers, glass, home based care (HBC) or durable medical equipment (DME) supplies, and pharmacy inventory. Ask your pharmacist where to safely dispose of these items. 


Hold a Take Back special event

If you are interested in holding a Take Back event in your community, contact your local Chief of Police or County Sheriff.  The local law enforcement agency will coordinate with the ND Bureau of Criminal Investigation, which is responsible for ensuring compliance with federal law to secure, log, and destroy the collected drugs. 

Lock. Monitor. Take Back Campaign

For Lock. Monitor. Take Back campaign materials, visit https://prevention.nd.gov/takeback