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Ohio deals with issue of disposal of pharmaceuticals.

Due to the lack of specific regulation, Ohio EPA has recently worked with several agencies to develop a consensus on how to properly collect and dispose of pharmaceuticals that are generated from Ohio residents.

Here's what Ohio EPA came up: The agency is providing the following information about how to properly plan and hold a residential pharmaceutical collection event, based on the legal requirements of the appropriate agencies.

If an entity wants to organize a collection event for pharmaceuticals, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) requires that it first obtain written permission from one of the DEA offices in Ohio. The DEA offices by county are provided at the end of this document. The request letter must include:

* names and addresses of all agencies involved;

* description, date, and time of event(s); and

* description of law enforcement officials to be present.

If that request is approved, the DEA office will respond with a formal letter of permission which expires one year after the date of issuance. Each event will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. Here are the DEA conditions for pharmaceutical collection:

* A duly authorized and certified full-time law enforcement officer shall be responsible for supervising the collection.

* The law enforcement officer must have sole control of all controlled substances until they are turned over for destruction.

* Only pharmaceutical drugs may be accepted (no illegal drugs such as marijuana, heroin, methamphetamine, LSD, etc.).

* The law enforcement officer shall ensure the controlled substances are disposed of in accordance with his/her standard agency procedures.

* Destruction shall comply with federal, state and local regulations.

As far as law enforcement is concerned, the agency notes that a person cannot knowingly distribute or dispense a controlled substance unless they have a valid DEA registration. This means that the end user cannot give prescribed controlled substances to another person. However, a law enforcement exemption in Title 21 of the Code of Federal Regulations authorizes law enforcement to handle controlled substances when acting in the course of their official duties. In accordance with this exemption, DEA requires a law enforcement officer to be present to assume custody of controlled substances at any pharmaceutical collection event. While controlled substances only comprise a portion of all pharmaceuticals, a typical collection event would be expected to receive a mixture of controlled and noncontrolled substances. Therefore, unless a pharmacist is present to identify controlled substances, the law enforcement officer would be responsible for all collected pharmaceuticals.

In addition, the Ohio State Board of Pharmacy states that DEA's policy on pharmaceutical collection events complies with Ohio law. Additionally, the Board states that pharmacies (and other terminal distributors) cannot take back pharmaceuticals, according to the Ohio Administrative Code.

For the safe destruction of pharmaceutical waste from residents, an entity conducting a pharmaceutical take-back event may contact a local facility permitted by Ohio EPA's Division of Air Pollution Control (DAPC) to operate one of the following types of facilities or emission units:

* Hazardous Waste Incinerators and Solid Waste Incinerators

* Sewage Sludge Incinerators equipped with an afterburner operating at a temperature of at least 1800[degrees]F

* Basic Oxygen Furnaces

* Electric Arc Furnaces

* Blast Furnaces

* Cement Kilns, Lightweight Aggregate Kilns, Lime Kilns (no asphalt concrete plants)

The Ohio EPA District Office or local air agency to contact is listed by county at
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Publication:Solid Waste Report
Geographic Code:1U3OH
Date:Nov 3, 2010
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