Walmart Releases New Product For Prescription Drug Disposal, Says Groundbreaking
This week Walmart began distributing a new pharmaceutical product that the company states offers a safe method of prescription drug disposal. It’s called DisposeRX, and when combined with warm water it transforms any form of opioid into a biodegradable gel that cannot be separated or returned to a usable form.
In a statement, Walmart said that this first-of-its-kind drug disposal product is also FDA-approved, and that the product “will now be provided in addition to ongoing counseling available to Walmart patients on proper opioid use when filling an opioid prescription…”
Marybeth Hays, executive vice president of Consumables and Health and Wellness at Walmart U.S., said the following in a statement:
“The health and safety of our patients is a critical priority; that’s why we’re taking an active role in fighting our nation’s opioid issue – an issue that has affected so many families and communities across America.”
The company further explained that patients filling new opioid prescriptions at any of its pharmacies will be given a free DisposeRX packet beginning immediately, and existing customers may receive one at a time. Chronic pain patients will be offered packets biannually.
Critics say the product is unnecessary, and indeed, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is telling people just to flush them down the toilet. Flushing drugs into the sewer system is an environmental hazard, however, and this author contends that in light of recent research about drug contamination affecting lakes and rivers in the U.S., Walmart might be on to something.
Granted, much of the contamination results from human waste, but do we really need to add to the problem?
About The Epidemic
According to the CDC, more than 64,000 people in the United States died in 2016 of overdoses related to drugs or alcohol. The majority of these deaths involved illicit opioids or prescription drugs such as painkillers and benzodiazepines.