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Drug take-back will be a hot session issue

By Mark Johnson, Senior Vice President of Government Affairs

I participated on a conference call this week regarding the disposal of unwanted pharmaceuticals or drug take-back.

Rep. Strom Peterson, D -Edmonds, is the prime sponsor of House Bill 1047 that would create a statewide drug take-back program funded by the drug manufacturers.  The bill would also pre-empt local governments from adopting other similar programs.  HB 1047 is modeled after several county ordinances.  Many advocates would prefer to have a statewide standard program rather than a county-by-county piecemeal approach.

Concerns over suicide prevention, poison control, opioid abuse, accidental overdoses, and drugs in the environment have all contributed to the interest in working on a solution.  Also, several pharmacies are actively rolling out drug disposal programs on their own.

HB 1047 is expected to be in play early in the 2018 Session that begins January 8 and is scheduled for 60 days.

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