Walgreens to provide drug disposal packets free to customers

DEERFIELD, Ill. -- Walgreens is making it easier for customers to dispose of unused drugs safely.

The drugstore chain said Monday that it will offer at several thousand stores packets that customers can use to turn medications into a useless gel before throwing them away at home.

The DisposeRx packets will be available for free at Walgreens stores that do not already have a medication disposal kiosk except in Iowa and Nebraska, where the chain says it has other options. Deerfield, Illinois-based Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc. has kiosks at 1,400 pharmacies and runs more than 9,500 drugstores in total.

Walmart began providing DisposeRx packets to pharmacy customers last year.

Federal regulators say patients should dispose expired or unused medications as quickly as possible to prevent them from being taken accidentally or misused.