WEST DES MOINES, IOWA (October 24, 2019) — To further assist in combatting the national opioid epidemic, Hy-Vee Inc announces it has purchased and will install drug take-back receptacles by November 7, 2019, in all 276 Hy-Vee pharmacy locations throughout its eight-state region to provide customers a secure place to dispose of unused medications, including controlled substances.

The availability of drug take-back receptacles in all Hy-Vee pharmacies provides customers with a safe and responsible way to dispose of unused, unwanted, or expired drugs in communities throughout the Midwest and remove them from the environment.

“Installing drug take-back receptacles in all of our pharmacies is one more step Hy-Vee is taking toward combatting the opioid epidemic,” said Kristin Williams, senior vice president and chief health officer at Hy-Vee.

In addition, Hy-Vee announces that effective today all Hy-Vee Pharmacy locations will limit the initial quantity of opioids prescribed for treatment of acute pain to seven days — or fewer days where state law or a third-party payor requires.

The new seven-day limit does not apply to chronic pain; pain being treated as a part of cancer care, hospice, or other end-of-life care; pain being treated as part of palliative-care practices; and medications used to treat opioid addiction.

“We want to be part of solution, while continuing to provide needed care for customers with acute pain and other severe pain-management situations in communities throughout the eight states we serve,” said Williams.

In January 2019, Hy-Vee announced that its pharmacies would no longer allow a subsequent-fill of a Schedule II controlled-substance, or a refill of a Schedule III or Schedule IV controlled-substance more than 72 hours early without authorization from the prescriber.

Hy-Vee also offers naloxone without a prescription in all eight states where it operates pharmacies: Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, South Dakota, and Wisconsin. Naloxone is available at Hy-Vee pharmacies in nasal-spray and injection forms (upon request), although nasal spray is the most commonly-used form. The drug is stored behind the counter, and cost varies, depending on the form and whether a customer goes through his or her insurance, or pays cash.

Naloxone can be administered to any person who has overdosed on a wide range of opioids, including hydrocodone, oxycodone, morphine, and codeine, as well as heroin.



Hy-Vee Inc is an employee-owned corporation operating more than 265 retail stores across eight Midwestern states with sales of $10 billion annually. The supermarket chain is synonymous with quality, variety, convenience, healthy-lifestyles, culinary-expertise, and superior customer service. Hy-Vee ranks in the Top 10 Most Trusted Brands and has been named one of America’s Top 5 favorite grocery stores. The company’s more than 83,000 employees provide “A Helpful Smile in Every Aisle” to customers every day. For additional information, visit www.hy-vee.com.

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