Pharmaceutical Take Back Programs

  • Kati I. Stoddard
  • Duane B. Huggett
Part of the Emerging Topics in Ecotoxicology book series (ETEP, volume 4)


Prior to September 2010 the US national policy for the proper disposal of pharmaceuticals was limited to published guidance provided by several federal agencies; however, on September 25, 2010 the US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) established the National Take Back Initiative. This program is designed to provide citizens an opportunity to safely dispose of medications they no longer need or want. In 2010 two of these DEA events were held during which a total of 4,000 state and local law enforcement agencies across the country participated and a staggering 309 tons of medications were collected. A third event is planned for October 2011. Additionally, the Safe and Secure Drug Disposal Act of 2010 signed by President Obama on October 12, 2010 provided the means for the Controlled Substance Act (CSA) to be amended to allow the DEA to develop a procedure for individuals to safely dispose of their unwanted medications, including medications considered controlled under the CSA [1]. This legislation will ensure future DEA events and other take back events are legally able to dispose of controlled medications, which is critical as these medications have a high potential for diversion or abuse.


Risk Perception Risk Communication General Practitioner Accidental Poisoning Back Event 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Biological SciencesUniversity of North TexasDentonUSA

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