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Narcotics under tight control -- until it's time to dump them

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posted on Sep, 14 2008 @ 12:38 PM
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Narcotics under tight control -- until it's time to dump them


www.usatoday.com

MINNEAPOLIS — In a frustrating quirk in government policy, the most tightly controlled drugs — like painkilling narcotics prone to abuse — are the ones that most often elude environmental regulation when they become waste.

Federal narcotics regulators impose strict rules meant to keep controlled pharmaceuticals out of the wrong hands. Yet those rules also make these drugs nearly impossible to handle safely as waste, say hospital environmental administrators.

The problem is huge, because more than 365 medicines are controlled by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration — almost 12% of all prescriptions, the agency says. They include widely used narcotics, stimulants, depressants and steroids — drugs like codeine, morphine, oxycodone, diazepam (often sold as Valium) and methylphenidate (often sold as Ritalin).


(visit the link for the full news article)




posted on Sep, 14 2008 @ 12:38 PM
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An estimated 250 million pounds of these drugs get flushed every year?

That is shocking.

From the article...


At Abbott Northwestern Hospital here, nurse Keri Osborne recently was opening a locked room at a spine surgery unit, where a machine must check her fingerprints before she pours unused controlled drugs into the sink.


I've always wondered what happened to the unused or out of date drugs, I suppose that is no longer a mystery.

I do wonder what kind of impact this could have (long term) on the environment.

www.usatoday.com
(visit the link for the full news article)



posted on Sep, 14 2008 @ 12:43 PM
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The first studies of the residue in our drinking water have been proven to be way underreported. In the last study the results where reported as 50% more than original forcasts. That for me means that it probably a whole hell of alot more than that!

Zindo



posted on Sep, 14 2008 @ 12:56 PM
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reply to post by ZindoDoone
 


That is interesting.

This is an older report....

AP: Drugs show up in Americans' water



www.usatoday.com...


A vast array of pharmaceuticals — including antibiotics, anti-convulsants, mood stabilizers and sex hormones — have been found in the drinking water supplies of at least 41 million Americans, an Associated Press investigation shows.

To be sure, the concentrations of these pharmaceuticals are tiny, measured in quantities of parts per billion or trillion, far below the levels of a medical dose. Also, utilities insist their water is safe.

But the presence of so many prescription drugs — and over-the-counter medicines like acetaminophen and ibuprofen — in so much of our drinking water is heightening worries among scientists of long-term consequences to human health.


What is really going on here?



[edit on 14-9-2008 by The_Alarmist2012]



posted on Sep, 14 2008 @ 01:03 PM
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This is absurd, we have designated disposal for sharps and biohazard items, but no system for disposal of toxic medications.

Running water through simple carbon will remove medications and many chemicals, it is widely used in the aquarium hobby for just this purpose.

I would think it would be best to burn them in some way, in an incenerator, a high heat enclosed enviroment. Also to have a better system for medications ordering so that there is not so much waster to be flushed, burned or wasted.

Ideally I would like to see excess medication donated to public clinics of some kind to be given to the poor and needy at a much lower cost. The issue of expiration dates is a problem though and one I dont have a solution to.



posted on Sep, 14 2008 @ 01:28 PM
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reply to post by gluetrap
 


I agree, they have ways to eliminate the most dangerous chemical and biological weapons, but we flush potentially dangerous and harmful mixes of prescription drugs without any studies on the potential environmental impact.

What if these drugs are somehow getting into the drinking waters of some cities as is cited in the older report above in this thread?



posted on Sep, 14 2008 @ 01:30 PM
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Its true that these processes would work but the regs do not allow that. It makes no sense but what government regs do make any sense anymore??


Zindo




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