Pharmacists

Pharmacy Collection Protocol

Western Australia and Northern Territory

  1. A RUM Project approved container (the container) with RUM Project approved liner, lid and liner seal, is delivered by the selected wholesaler to a community pharmacy on request.
  2. The container is to be kept in a section of the dispensary or in a room or enclosure in the pharmacy to which the public does not have access. The container may be placed in a visible position, but out of reach of the public, as this will reinforce the message that unwanted medicines can be returned to the pharmacy and that the returned medicines will not be recycled.
  3. Any medicines returned by consumers must not be recycled*. Handling poisons is a professional responsibility, and whenever possible it is recommended that the pharmacist, or pharmacy graduate, accepts the returned medicines and places them in the container. All medicines, including complementary and alternate medicines, received from consumers may be placed in the container.
  4. Pharmacists should take reasonable steps to ensure any Schedule 8 medicines returned for disposal are recorded and destroyed in accordance with state/territory regulations. The destroyed medicines, having been rendered unusable, should then be placed in the container for disposal.
  5. When accepting unwanted medicines from consumers, pharmacists may take the opportunity to review the medicines returned, especially if the consumer is a regular customer, and thus determine if further consultation is required.
  6. Needles, other Sharps and liquid cytotoxic products should not be placed in the container, but in a container specifically designed for such waste.
  7. The container lid should be left to rest on the container until the container is almost full.
  8. When the container is almost full, a replacement container is ordered from the preferred wholesaler (via the Portable Data Entry (PDE) number provided), the container liner bag sealed with the tamper proof seal and the container lid firmly attached.
  9. The wholesaler delivery person collects the “complete” container and the new container (including liner) is placed in use.

Pharmacies serviced by Wholesaler sub-contractors (that is Rural, Remote and Isolated pharmacies), must ensure a Consignment Note accompanies the container, which is returned via the customary collection routine.

* This arrangement accords with internationally agreed guidelines on drug donations issued by the World Health Organisation (WHO) “Guidelines for Drug Donations” Ref. WHO/DAP/96.2

PROTOCOL AT THE WHOLESALER DEPOT

  1. Containers from pharmacies are received at the wholesaler depot. Containers are stored in a quarantine area, and palletised for collection by the appointed waste transport organisation. Wholesaler staff must not open containers.
  2. When appropriate, the wholesaler will contact the appointed waste transport company to arrange collection of palletised containers.
  3. Wholesaler staff will ensure containers returned from waste disposal are intact and clean before recycling to pharmacies.

The Protocol was prepared by the Standards Committee of the National Return & Disposal of Unwanted Medicines Limited.

Members: Simon Appel – Chair (Pharmacist – Project Manager)

Jutta Warn (Commonwealth Department of Health & Ageing)

Maxine Goodman (Branch Director, Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (NSW Branch) until 2006.

Deborah Monk (Director, Scientific and Technical Affairs, Medicines Australia)

Ken Bickle (Pharmacist, RUM Project)

Advisor: Stephen Marty (Pharmacist, Registrar Pharmacy Board of Victoria, member COPRA). July 2005


Pharmacy Collection Protocol

Queensland, New South Wales, ACT, Victoria, Tasmania and South Australia

  1. A RUM Project approved container (the container) will be delivered by the wholesaler to the participating pharmacy.
  2. The container is to be kept in a section of the dispensary or in a room or enclosure in the pharmacy to which the public does not have access. The container may be placed in a visible position, but out of reach of the public, as this will reinforce the message that unwanted medicines can be returned to the pharmacy and that the returned medicines will not be recycled.
  3. Any medicines returned by consumers must not be recycled*. Handling poisons is a professional responsibility, and whenever possible it is recommended that the pharmacist, or pharmacy intern, accepts the returned medicines and places them in the container. All medicines, including complementary and alternate medicines, received from consumers are placed in the container.
  4. Pharmacists should take reasonable steps to ensure any Schedule 8 medicines returned for disposal are recorded and destroyed in accordance with state/territory legislation. The destroyed medicines, having been rendered unusable, should then be dispersed within the container for disposal.
  5. When accepting unwanted medicines from consumers, pharmacists may take the opportunity to review the medicines returned, especially if the consumer is a regular customer, and thus determine if further consultation is required.
  6. Needles, other Sharps and liquid cytotoxic products should not be placed in the container, but in a container specifically designed for such waste.
  7. The container lid should be left to rest on the container until the container is almost full.
  8. When the container is almost full, a replacement container is ordered from the preferred wholesaler and the container lid firmly attached.
  9. The wholesaler delivery person collects the sealed container and the new container is placed in use.

Pharmacies serviced by Wholesaler sub-contractors (that is Rural, Remote and Isolated pharmacies), must ensure a Consignment Note accompanies the container, which is returned via the customary collection routine.

* This arrangement accords with internationally agreed guidelines on drug donations issued by the World Health Organisation (WHO) “Guidelines for Drug Donations” Ref. WHO/DAP/96.2

PROTOCOL AT THE WHOLESALER DEPOT

  1. Full containers from pharmacies are received at the wholesaler depot. Containers are stored in a quarantine area, and palletised for collection by the appointed waste transport Agent. Wholesaler staff must not open containers.
  2. Palletised containers are collected by Agents who will also deliver replacement containers to wholesaler depots.

PROTOCOL FOR WASTE DISPOSAL COMPANY

The appointed incineration company receives the palletised containers from the transport Agent and at the earliest opportunity incinerates the containers and contents.

October 2009

The Protocol was prepared by the Standards Committee of the National return & Disposal of Unwanted Medicines Limited.