Recycle your inhaler in 2013!

GSK is launching the first, UK-wide recycling and recovery scheme for all respiratory inhalers to reduce the harmful environmental impact associated with landfill disposal. With 73 million inhalers dispensed a year… that’s a whole lot of rubbish and waste.

Through the proposed scheme, the pieces that make up the inhalers can be recovered, allowing patients to breathe new life into their old inhalers. By working together with patients, pharmacies and healthcare professionals GSK intends to reduce waste and greenhouse gas emissions to move towards a more environmentally sustainable treatment of respiratory disease.

To make the scheme as user friendly as possible, GSK would like some feedback from you, the potential users of this service, before the launch of this service in February 2013. The survey’s aim is to collect all the information you might require to easily recycle your old or unwanted inhaler.


20 Replies

  • I have often wondered why a Handihaler can be reused and yet you get a fresh inhaler every time with ventolin when a refill is all you need. Thank goodness someone is going to address this waste.

  • Thanks for this. None in my area. Have let them know. My husband seems to have collected a mountain of this inhalers :/ Would be good to get them recycled.

  • Glad to see such a positive response to this scheme! Thanks to everyone who has filled it in so far.

  • Excellent idea,

    Could not load sheets 2 and 3 therefore I don't know if any in my area but will keep a look out.


  • It looks like all the current sites are on sheet 1. Sheets 2 and 3 appear to be blank. Actually, that is down to Excel as when you start a new file, it always creates 3 sheets! :-)

  • Local council's can advise, the metal part of the inhaler I'm already recycling with cans. But the plastic parts need to be recycled also.

    You can request repeat spiriva capsules alone, without handihaler which can help a little.

    It is about time inhalers and spacers were recycled properly I agree.

  • my local pharmacy have a small box on the counter for used inhalers.:-) x

  • think it is a brilliant idea getting a new inhaler every time you get a refill is such a waste

  • This is a good idea and I will look locally. I filled in the survey but for me there is a 25 mile bus ride to the address they gave, will save them up if that's what I must do.

  • I will be doing this in the future.

    polly xx

  • What a brilliant idea!

  • This is a long overdue initiative by GSK :) A big pat on the back and a round of applause for them ! It's not often we hear anything really good about drugs companies.

    Unfortunately I was unable to open the participating pharmacies link as it is an Excel file, but the next time I visit my local pharmacy I'll just ask if they are part of this scheme.

  • Recycling the oxygen pipe (nose hose) is also long overdue. Whilst having regular changes that guard against infection carrying , it is a wasteful practice that requires action should be taken.

  • Good News. I have a bagfull of them. Like Elian I could not open the file but will ask the pharmacy next time I go into town.

  • We need to know which chemists are taking part and whether GSK will be telling all of them.

    A very good idea. I always take my old ones to the chemist but don't know what they do with them.

  • I've recommeded to them in the survey they should include Lloyds and Boots chemists as they seem pretty much available nationally. Although I don't know why the local council can't include them in the local recycling centres which they have outside large supermarkets etc. Same for batteries. I know lidl do battery recycling but |I don't know of any other.

  • Brilliant! about time - thanks for letting us know.

  • I've no idea what my pharmacy does with them, but I've been returning all used inhalers to them since I started using them about 4 years ago.

  • My chemists say they go to landfill.

  • Wellman 2 Did nt realise these inhalers could be returned to local pharmacy. As I couldn t access website I will make enquiries think it s an excellant idea.

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