California Medicine Take Back (SB 966)

October, 2007

SB 966 was signed into law in October 2007 as Chapter 542, Statutes of 2007. This bill begins the process of establishing a state-wide solution for the growing problem of improper disposal of unused and expired pharmaceutical drugs by creating model disposal programs and requiring the California Integrated Waste Management Board (CIWMB) to report back to the legislature on potential state-wide implementation.

The bill encourages cooperative relationship between the board and manufacturers, retailers, and local, state, and federal government agencies in the board’s development of model programs to devise a safe, efficient, convenient, cost-effective, sustainable, and environmentally sound solution for the disposal of drugs. Pharmacies, veterinarians, clinics, other medical settings and governmental entities may establish take back programs. Model programs are required to allow consumers to take back, at no additional cost, any drugs that a participating take back program sells or previously sold. Participants who take back drugs must ensure health and safety and provide a report to the CIWMB. Model programs should be available by December 1, 2008. The bill does not apply to controlled substances.