Federal Regulatory Clarification on Drug Disposal

There is a common misconception that at-home medication disposal is regulated; however, that is not the case.

Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) regulations on drug disposal are only applicable to DEA registrants. The DEA disposal final rule, 79 Fed. Reg. 53, 520, Sept. 9, 2014, expands the rule for its registrants but still allows for ultimate users/consumers to dispose of unused pharmaceutical medication in their home.

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) specifically excludes household disposal of unused medication from hazardous waste regulations and labels unused medication disposed of in the home simply as solid municipal waste.

Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not regulate household disposal of unused medication and acknowledges at-home technologies for disposal of unused medication.

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