The hazards of improper drug disposal are catastrophic, impacting the environment, animal health and human health through poisonings and drug abuse. When facilities or consumers dispose of medications improperly either by throwing in the trash or flushing down the drain, the negative impacts are numerous and costly. Improper drug disposal can lead to costly clean-up efforts, expensive fines against businesses that do not follow federal regulations for safe drug disposal and even costs countless human lives through drug addiction and overdose deaths.
Medications that are improperly disposed of end up in the wrong hands, or in landfills or water supplies. Consumers must be made aware of the severe potential complications that occur from improper pharmaceutical waste disposal.
Improper Drug Disposal Causes Negative Impact on the Environment
Improperly disposed medications can end up in our nation’s waterways in different ways, either by flushing down the drain or by permeation from aquifers deep underground. The most common drugs found in our water supply include antibiotics, antidepressants, painkillers, seizure medications, steroids and more. A study by the World Health Organization revealed that even conventional wastewater treatment plants only remove about 50% of pharmaceuticals with free chlorine and chloramines were even less effective. This has led to negative effects on fish, wildlife and even drinking water.
Unused Prescriptions Lead to Accidental Poisoning
When expired or unused prescriptions are left unsecured in a home instead of being properly disposed of it becomes very easy for children or pets to accidentally ingest them. These accidental poisonings can have fatal consequences for both children and pets with more than 60,000 children ages five and under taking a medication and unintentionally overdosing, according to a report on WebMD. In fact, 95% of children who are accidentally poisoned by medications gained access while at home when a caregiver or parent were not looking.
Improper Drug Disposal Leads to Drug Abuse and Addiction
When consumers or employees at facilities do not properly dispose of medications, this opens the door for drug diversion, the abuse or misuse of prescription drugs. Drug diversion is one of the main contributing factors to the opioid epidemic in the United States. Young adults and teenagers mistakenly think that prescription medication is somehow safer than other kinds of drugs, which is simply not true. Abuse of prescription medication can often be the first introduction to drug abuse that leads to addition, more so than use of illicit street drugs. Prescription pills are extremely dangerous when in the wrong hands, whether that be young children, teens, or adults young and old alike.
The consequences of improper drug disposal are tremendous, posing a risk to human health and public safety.
Solution for Proper Drug Disposal
Rx Destroyer™ is a safe and effective product for proper drug disposal and is available in a wide variety of sizes to suit any clinical or consumer setting. With a patented* formula of activated carbon, Rx Destroyer™ quickly neutralizes medications on contact making them non-retrievable. This prevents drug diversion instantly and protects the environment when discarded. In many cases, Rx Destroyer™ can simply be discarded right into the trash without causing harm to the environment although facilities should follow all local, tribal, state and facility regulations.
C2R Global Manufacturing is a leading pharmaceutical waste disposal supplier, offering Rx Destroyer™ which is safe, easy to use and effective. Rx Destroyer™ is protecting the environment and saving lives by preventing drug diversion in a wide range of settings and can help you to follow proper drug disposal regulations. Contact us to learn more about Rx Destroyer™ and how together we can protect the environment and save lives with safe and proper drug disposal.
Myranda Eckert is the Project Development Manager for Rx Destroyer ™. Contributing to the company goal of reducing the amount of unused or expired medication, Myranda focuses on communications and projects internally and externally to increase brand awareness, social impact, and overall efficacy. Her background in education and pharmaceutical industry knowledge allows her to support DEA registrants by keeping them informed on pharmaceutical disposal compliance regulations to ensure seamless integration and maintenance of their facilities' pharmaceutical waste. Saving Water, Saving Lives, One Prescription at a Time.