DEA offers more ways for clinics, clients to properly dispose of controlled substances

Beginning Oct. 9, animal hospitals and their clients will have more options available when it comes to disposing of controlled substances.

The Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) published a final rule establishing several convenient disposal methods that clients can utilize such as authorized take-back events, mail-back programs, and collection receptacle locations, the AVMA reported.

The DEA said in its final rule that it hopes the new measures will decrease the amount of unwanted or unused controlled substances in homes, which should reduce the frequency of these substances being released into the environment - especially by being flushed down toilets into the water supply.

"These expanded methods of disposal are expected to benefit the public by decreasing the supply of pharmaceutical controlled substances available for misuse, abuse, diversion, and accidental ingestion, and protect the environment from potentially harmful contaminants by providing alternate means of disposal for ultimate users," the DEA wrote.

According to the AVMA, practitioners will be directly affected by changes the DEA is making to 21 CFR 1307.21, the existing rule that covers registrant disposal. The DEA is deleting 21 CFR 1307.21 and creating 1317, which maintains existing disposal practices for registrant inventory and authorizes:

  • Prompt on-site destruction
  • Prompt delivery of controlled substances to a reverse distributor
  • Prompt delivery (for the purposes of return and recall) to the person from whom the controlled substance was obtained, the manufacturer, or a registrant authorized to accept returns on the manufacturer’s behalf

AVMA resources on controlled substance disposal

NEWStat Legislation & regulation