Do not flush medicine, pills, or any other hazardous material down the toilet or drain.

Iowa City residents can safely dispose of medications by using the medication drop off container at the Iowa City Police Department or by using the Hazardous Material Collection Facility at the Iowa City Landfill and Recycling Center. That facility accepts various medications, pills and sharps or needles

Community collection events are also held a few times each year to safely take-back medications. 

The next event will be held on April 28th:

The community is invited to safely dispose of expired, unused and unwanted medications during a local collection event on National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, Saturday, April 28, 2018. Drop off medications, as well as household sharps and needles, anytime between 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the East Side Recycling Center, 2401 Scott Blvd SE. This service is free and open to all, no questions asked. 

For more event information, visit:

Medication Drop Off Container 

Safely dispose of expired or unused medications and pills for free at the Iowa City Police Station, 410 E. Washington St. The red, Med Return drop off receptacle is located in the lobby and is accessible 24-7. The container accepts: 

  • prescription and over-the-counter medications
  • unfilled prescriptions
  • sample medications
  • prescription ointments and patches
  • vitamins
  • pet medications

Do not dispose of hydrogen peroxide, inhalers, aerosol cans, medications from businesses or clinics, needles (sharps), thermometers, or non-prescription ointments, lotions or liquids.

For more information, contact the Iowa City Police Department's Community Relations Officer at  

Sharps and Needles 

Residents can dispose of sharps and needles for free at the Hazardous Material Collection Facility at the Iowa City Landfill and Recycling Center. Appointments are required and can be made on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. Call 319-356-5185 to make an appointment.

Sharps and needles must be contained in a rigid plastic or metal container with a secure lid.

Household Hazardous Material Program 

The Iowa City Landfill and Recycling Center’s Hazardous Material Collection Facility accepts non-controlled substances, like Tylenol and antibiotics) year-round by appointment. Call 319-356-5185 to make an appointment.

This service is only available to residents of Johnson County and the cities of Kalona and Riverside. Businesses and non-profits may not use this service. Call 319-887-6160 to discuss other options. 

Learn more about Iowa City's Household Hazardous Material Program by visiting,

Community Collection Events 

Pharmaceutical and sharps collection events are held a few times each year. Information on the next event will be posted here when available.

Questions? Contact Resource Management at 319-356-5151 or the Recycling Coordinator at 319-887-6110 or