In its latest decision, the DEA changed the landscape of disposal of controlled substances in a positive way by allowing registrants, including retail pharmacies, hospitals, etc., to collect unused medication from the public at large for destruction. Until now, the disposal choices were slim and many doses of prescription opioids that were no longer needed by the patients for whom they were prescribed were diverted for illegitimate purposes. Now, the public will have few more options for disposal outside of the semi-annual Drug Take Back days. DEA CS Disposal Final Rule.
While this rule making is a step in the right direction, one question remains. That is, who will bear the cost of such disposal? Proper disposal of medication is not cheap and thus it can be reasonably expected that in the absence of government funding many registrants may hesitate to participate in such endeavor.