Every year, Canadians use and dispose of hundreds of millions of plastic pill bottles. You read that right: hundreds of millions. And yet, they’re only one small part of our massive plastic problem.
Depending on where you live, some of these single-use plastic bottles can be recycled, but sadly, most are still ending up in the landfill.
Teasdale Apothecary Co. is proud to be the first pharmacy in Nova Scotia to offer its customers the chance to participate in a reusable glass vial program as part of our commitment to reducing the amount of plastic in the waste stream.
Now, doing what you need to for your health and wellness does not have to come at the expense of the planet’s.
Read more about the program below.
How does the glass vial exchange program work?
We are pleased to offer all of our customers the option to have your prescription filled in a reusable glass vial instead of single-use plastic. When you sign up to participate, you will begin to receive your prescriptions in special glass vials that are approved for reuse in our pharmacy. When you’re ready for a refill or your next prescription, you’ll bring your used vial back when you come to pick it up. Your next prescription will be ready for you in another thoroughly sterilized vial, and the cycle continues.
How can I sign up?
It’s so easy! When you visit our pharmacy to register as a patient or fill a prescription, simply let us know that you’re interested in participating in the Green Vial Movement program. Together, we’ll go over a customer agreement with all of the program details, and set you up in the system. You’ll take your next prescription(s) home in a cute amber glass vial.
You in?! Let's get started: Transfer Your Prescriptions Now
Is there a cost to participate?
The Green Vial Movement is essentially a borrowing program. When you fill your first prescription or add another to your file, you will pay a small, one-time deposit of between $2.00 and $3.00 per vial, depending on the size you need. This deposit simply covers the replacement cost of the vial in the event of loss or damage.
When you return a vial to the pharmacy, the deposit will stay in place for your refills so we can continue to swap the vials out. If you don’t have any refills coming up, you can simply leave your deposit in the system for your next prescription or choose to have it refunded if you no longer wish to participate in the program.
How do I return my vial(s)? Do I have to return it within a certain timeframe?
Once you have finished your medication, you can drop off your clean, empty vial and its cap to our pharmacy team at any time.
For the program to have the biggest impact possible, we suggest you bring your vial(s) in when you pick up your refill or a new prescription, and we’ll swap it out for a new one under your original deposit.
Why can’t pharmacies reuse plastic pill bottles?
Because of the permeability of plastic, pharmacies cannot guarantee that there would be no cross-contamination between medications over time. Glass is chemically stable and does not present the same risks, making it the only approved material for reuse in a pharmacy. As an added bonus, glass is completely recyclable at the end of its life cycle.
Is reusing glass vials for medication safe and sanitary?
Yes! Unlike the plastic used to make most pill bottles, glass can be properly sterilized.
When you sign up for the program, you will be asked to sign a customer agreement that outlines your commitment to clean your vial(s) before you return them to the pharmacy. The pharmacy team will then sterilize the vials with a medical grade disinfectant, and they’ll be put back into the cycle for reuse.
Are the vials secure?
Absolutely – your family's health and safety is our number one priority. Our glass vials are high-quality and are offered with two different cap options: child-safe and easy-open. By default, we will refill your prescription with the child-safe cap. If you have grip or strength limitations and would benefit from an easy-open cap, simply let a member of our pharmacy team know and we will be sure to provide you with the best option to meet your needs.
Am I required to participate in the program if I get my prescriptions filled at Teasdale Apothecary Co.?
We think you’ll love the glass vial program, and in time, bringing them back to the pharmacy will go hand-in-hand with dropping off/picking up a prescription. Waste reduction is all about forming new habits!
If you aren’t sure yet, we will happily fill your prescription in an eco-friendly plastic bottle at no cost. Teasdale Apothecary Co. uses EcoloVials, which are made in Canada from non-toxic polypropylene, use 30% less plastic and 52% less CO2, and are more easily recycled than other plastic pill bottles.
Where can I find more information?
We are happy to answer any questions or address any concerns you may have about the program. Reach out at any time!