Disposal of Controlled and Non-Controlled Medications in Long-Term Care Communities

This is an update of the article originally published on October 9, 2014. Regulations change frequently. That’s why Sharps Compliance monitors updates and communicates any changes to its customers.

On September 9, 2014, the Drug Enforcement Agency published the Disposal of Controlled Substances Final Rule, which went into effect on October 9, 2014. This new rule allowed registered collectors to place DEA-compliant drug collection receptacles in long-term care facilities (LTCFs) for the collection and disposal of ultimate-user controlled substances (Schedules II-V). Continue reading “Disposal of Controlled and Non-Controlled Medications in Long-Term Care Communities”


Federal Agencies Recommend Take-Back Options as the Preferred Opioid Disposal Method

The 2018 SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act included a provision directing the federal General Accounting Office (GAO) to review and report on ultimate-user options for safe and effective disposal of unused opioids. In 2019, the agency released its report to Congress. One section discussed why “federal agencies recommend take-back options as the preferred disposal method” for unused/unwanted opioids.
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Proper Inhaler Disposal Management with Sharps’ New Inhaler Disposal System

Inhalers save lives and improve the quality of life for millions of people. Since the metered dose inhaler was invented in the 1950s, inhalers have become so much a part of daily life that many don’t realize that they require specialized handling and disposal after use. That’s why Sharps Compliance has developed the Inhaler Disposal System to provide for the compliant packaging and safe transportation of unused and partially used pressurized inhalers.
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Opioid Painkillers After Oral Surgery May Put Teens at Risk for Later Opioid Abuse

Most parents worry about their teens getting access to drugs at school or in social settings – not at the dentist. However, the American Dental Association and private insurers have expressed concerns about the widespread practice of prescribing opioid painkillers to teens after oral surgeries. The patients who filled those opioid prescriptions were nearly three times as likely to use opioids in the year after the prescription.

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Medications in the Trash: A Health & Environmental Hazard

Worldwide, landfills serve as the most common final destination for a wide range of business and consumer wastes discarded into the regular trash, including unwanted or expired medications5. Unfortunately, landfills are also one of the primary sources of contamination in ground waters and surface waters4. Once rainwater or other leaky wastes mix with the solid waste buried at landfills, a “leachate” liquid is created. When medications are disposed in the trash, they eventually contribute to this leachate, creating complex chemical cocktails that can end up in drinking water, rivers, and oceans alike, with the potential to cause serious public health and environmental issues5,7.
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