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Safe and proper storage of medicines

Proper storage of medicine is important to ensure the quality, effectiveness and safety of the medicines. You should always refer to the pharmacists for correct instruction on storage of medicines to ensure treatment can optimized.

Here are the TIPS on storage of medicines:

  1. KEEP your medicines in a safe and designated place

    Choose one designated place to store your medication. Make sure it is safe, and out of reach of children. Storing medicines at one designated place ensure easy access especially during emergency.

  2. SEPARATE your oral medicines from external use medicines.

    Do not mix different medicines in the same container.
    Oral medication should ke kept separately from medicines for external use. Keeping oral (table, syrup etc) and external (cream, eye drops, suppositories etc) use medication in a separate shelf/cabinet can reduce the risk of taking wrong medication

  3. KEEP your medicines according to the recommended temperature (refer to the product insert). For example:
    • 2-8 ° C : Keep in the middle of refrigerator (Example: insulin, eye drop, reconstituted antibiotic suspension)
    • 8-15 ° C : Keep in cool dry palce in the house (Example: soft gel capsule)
    • 15-30 ° C : Room temperature, away from sunlight Example: tablet and capsule)

    The quality of medicines may be affected due to improper storage. As a result, the treatment might be ineffective.

  4. KEEP medicines in it’s original container/packing.

    Do not remove the original medicines label with information such as name of the medication, strength, dosage, method of administration, method of storage and expiry date.

  5. STORE medicines out of sight and reach of children.

    Make sure all medications are stored safely. Keep them out of children’s reach and sight. It is advisable to keep the medicines using child resistant cap. This could prevent the children from opening the bottle and accidentally consume the medicines.

  1. NEVER keep or leave your medicines in a car for a long hours.
  2. NEVER keep and mix different medicines in the same container..
  3. NEVER keep your medication in a place that expose to direct sunlight, place with high temperature and moist areas such as near the windows, on the refrigerator or in the bathroom.
  4. JNEVER keep your medicines in the refrigerator unless directed to do so (please refer to the product insert).
  5. NEVER keep expired, damaged or medicine without labels.

The following are example of places to keep your medicines safely and properly:


  1. Kenali Ubat Anda. (2012). Poster dan Meditips – Cara Penyimpanan Ubat Yang Selamat. http://www.knowyourmedicine.gov.my/newsmaster.cfm?&menuid=20&action=view&retrieveid=179&lang=BM
  2. Komuniti Farmasi Malaysia. (2011). Cara Menyimpan Ubat Dengan Betul. http://www.malaysianpharma.com/index.php/articles22/kenali-ubat-anda/80-cara-menyimpan-ubat-dengan-betul.html
  3. www.nhsdirect.wales.nhs.uk
  4. http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/007189.htm
  5. http://www.safemedication.com/
Last Reviewed : 20 March 2015
Writer/Translator : Hayati Alwani bt. Yahaya
Accreditor : Noraini bt. Mohamad