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Regulated Medical Waste Disposal: Drugs Included

Regulated Medical Waste Disposal: Drugs Included


Disposing of medical waste requires proper methods of destruction to meet regulations with the Drug Enforcement Administration, DEA, and Environmental Protection Agency, EPA.  Managing pharmaceutical waste for proper and regulated disposal can be confusing as facilities must follow all federal, state, local and tribal regulations in addition to specific policies and procedures established by the facility.  Not all drug waste is the same and all medical waste, including controlled substances and hazardous pharmaceutical waste, must meet DEA and EPA regulations.

RCRA and Non-RCRA Regulated Medical Waste Disposal

The Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, RCRA, grants authority to the EPA for regulation and control of hazardous medical waste which must be monitored from “cradle to grave”.  These pharmaceuticals include hazardous waste as outlined in 40 CFR Regulations parts 261, 262, 264, 265, 266, 268, 270, and 273, the Management Standards for Hazardous Waste Pharmaceuticals and Amendment to the P075 Listing for Nicotine.  Chemotherapy waste, for example, falls under the RCRA type of drug with a U-listed rating which is toxic to the environment and to people.

The final rulings in 40 CFR grant authority to the EPA for hazardous pharmaceutical waste disposal and removes the dual regulations of the EPA and DEA.  Hazardous pharmaceutical waste is prohibited from being flushed as a form of disposal and must be deemed non-retrievable to meet regulations.

Non-RCRA Medical Waste

Medical waste not falling under the RCRA ruling includes drugs not considered to be hazardous although these still may require specific regulations for disposal.  Non-RCRA drugs that are not considered hazardous must meet specific federal, state, local and tribal regulations as well as DEA and facility specific procedures.  Facilities must implement a drug disposal system which is part of an overall, comprehensive drug diversion policy.

Easy Compliance for Regulated Medical Waste Disposal

Disposal of controlled substances is regulated by the DEA and includes medications such as hydrocodone, morphine and other opioids.  Using a disposal method that instantly renders these drugs irretrievable is ideal in healthcare settings to prevent drug diversion and environmental contamination.

Rx Destroyer™ offers a convenient, safe and easy drug disposal method which provides compliance to DEA and EPA regulations.  Our unique activated charcoal solution quickly neutralizes pills, patches, capsules, liquids, suppositories and powders.

Rx Destroyer™ provides drug disposal compliance made easy with a patented formula that instantly neutralizes medications and renders them non-retrievable.  We provide compliance consultations, on-site training and phone support to educate our customers on compliant drug disposal methods.  Contact us to learn how to quickly and easily get your facility up and running with DEA compliant regulated medical waste disposal.


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