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Recycling Vials?

Discussion in 'Pharmacy' started by njac, Jun 13, 2008.

  1. njac

    njac Senior Member
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    So how do people dispose of their vials? I assume they're recyclable and tear off the labels and put them out with my recycling but what else can be done?

    Personally, I call in my Rxs so I wouldn't be able to hand them the bottle and have them refill it, although that might be best...
     
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  3. RxWildcat

    RxWildcat Julius Randle BEASTMODE!
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    I recycle stock bottles at my pharmacy, not the rx vials though.
     
  4. SpirivaSunrise

    SpirivaSunrise Go Gators!
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    You mean have them place the refill caps/tabs into the same vial and re-use it? Not allowed :D

    In any case, we used to just toss the vials patients brought in for refills (after ripping off the label). So you're probably better off recycling it yourself? Curious to see what other pharmacies do.
     
  5. collegegirl247

    collegegirl247 Accepted Pharmacy Student
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    we have a patient that comes in and asks us to recycle her bottles...but we can't (they have already had her drugs in them) so we just toss them...but we dont tell her that! lol
     
  6. Old Timer

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    CVS has the bottles and all PHI shredded......
     
  7. njac

    njac Senior Member
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    and why can't they reuse the vials?
     
  8. collegegirl247

    collegegirl247 Accepted Pharmacy Student
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    safety reasons most likely- allergies??

    or maybe its to expensive or they are just to lazy!
     
  9. PharmDstudent

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    SDN1977 wrote about that a while back. She said something like, pharmacists have to guarantee the purity of the product before giving it to patients.
     
  10. SpirivaSunrise

    SpirivaSunrise Go Gators!
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    It's prohibited by Consumer Product Safety...based on the wear the plastic vial is expected to get. You wouldn't be able to ensure that it would work properly (especially the cap).
     
  11. SpirivaSunrise

    SpirivaSunrise Go Gators!
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    I can see how adulteration would come into the legal argument too.
     
  12. njac

    njac Senior Member
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    even if it's my own vial? and the pharmacists know I'm a pharmacy student?

    I cleaned my bathroom today and came up with 9 empty vials!
     
  13. SpirivaSunrise

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    Well, some states flat out have statutes that forbid it (I remember coming across some that blatantly say no re-use). But as far as federal standards with Consumer Product Safety and Poison Prevention...the pharmacist has to have confidence that the container will meet safety requirements (let alone that it's clean, etc.). If the vial manufacturer doesn't ensure that the container will hold up for re-use, I can't see why a pharmacist would use their professional judgment to guarantee otherwise.
     
  14. PharmDstudent

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    That's so strange. (I know you didn't make the rules!)

    I don't see how that's a relevant issue anymore, because 90+ day supply scripts are so common now, plus the insurance companies like to play hardball when it comes to day supply. For example, if a baby gets 1ml from a 120ml bottle QD, are we suppose to reissue the bottle three months down the road?
     
  15. pharmagirl

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    They shred the vials too? THat's some shredder!:thumbup:
     
  16. RxWildcat

    RxWildcat Julius Randle BEASTMODE!
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    KY has a law that you can't re-use the vials, although I know of a certain independent that re-uses them all the time.
     
  17. UBCmicrobi

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    We recycle our vials, after ripping off the label. We have a few patients bring in old vials to be recycled, but we try and remind them they can just put them in their recycling bins at home after ripping off the label. We try and recycle as much as we can!
     
  18. All4MyDaughter

    All4MyDaughter SDN Mommystrator
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    I'm not sure that the business you've been running out of the trunk of your car REALLY qualifies as "independent pharmacy." :smuggrin:
     
  19. RxWildcat

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  20. JerryPharmD

    JerryPharmD Salt Miner
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    In Arizona we can legally re-use the vials as long as a new cap is used each time, though no one does. (At least that's what the law professor said and he seemed to know his stuff)
     
  21. collegegirl247

    collegegirl247 Accepted Pharmacy Student
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    when you think of it though...I guess re-using vials could be just as dangerous as counting different pills all on the same counting tray!
     
  22. PharmDstudent

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    ...unless someone stores something besides medicine in their vial. :idea:
     
  23. NaOH

    NaOH IT'S PAAFEKTO!
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    Two necrothreads in a week? This could become a bad habit... anyway.

    Anyone have experience with recycling stock bottles? Was looking at work last night, and the large majority seem to be #2/HDPE so I don't think there'd be an issue from a compatibility standpoint, but I wonder about tablet dust, liquid remaining in the bottom, etc. Although, I suppose right now we're just tossing them into the trash, so... considering we generate several bags full of discarded containers every day, it'd be nice to keep some of that out of the landfill.
     
  24. joetrisman

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    I thought about writing some cute tree-hugger article for student pharmacist or the like concerning this subject as I've yet to step foot in a pharmacy that doesn't have their trash cans pouring over with empty stock bottles that could be recycled. But then my two week break from school was over and with it any delusions of grandeur and writing...
     
  25. NaOH

    NaOH IT'S PAAFEKTO!
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    I haven't had the idealism beat out of me yet. :soexcited:
     
  26. joetrisman

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    I'll be second author ;)
     
  27. Busta919

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    The melting point of HDPE is in the area of 266F. Processing of HDPE in blow molding, the way that bottles are formed, is around 380F. I don't believe this would be sufficient to pyrolyze remaining drug particles, although they may be heat labile.
    I am sure the FDA has a food grade requirement for polyethylene for use in drug containers, so at best, the HDPE will be made into plastic garbage bags or some other PCR implement.
     
  28. All4MyDaughter

    All4MyDaughter SDN Mommystrator
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    Write it for SDN. We pay $ for articles.
     
  29. amox

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    All stock bottles are recycled (not the caps), and our vials we dispense to patients can be recycled. It's a pain pulling off the labels, so I try to inform each patient to remove labels prior to recycling them with us.

    When we recycle bottles and caps, we return to the mfg, who then remelts them to be reformed.

    This is the company we purchase Tri-Maxx from http://www.provial.com/infotrimaxx.php
     
  30. zelman

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    Identical law in Massachusetts
     
  31. owlegrad

    owlegrad Uncontrollable Sarcasm Machine
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    This would make a cool article for SDN, like A4MD said. Interesting stuff.
     
  32. NaOH

    NaOH IT'S PAAFEKTO!
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  33. owlegrad

    owlegrad Uncontrollable Sarcasm Machine
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    Do it! ;)
     
  34. njac

    njac Senior Member
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    I want a cut! This was my idea years and years ago!
     
  35. owlegrad

    owlegrad Uncontrollable Sarcasm Machine
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    So we are going to have some sort of four way here?
     
  36. Farmercyst

    Farmercyst From the shadows
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    Crowded
     
  37. All4MyDaughter

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    I might be too old for that much excitement.
     
  38. NaOH

    NaOH IT'S PAAFEKTO!
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  39. ChicagoPharmD

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    We recycle stock bottles, paper that doesn't have pt-sensitive info on it, and bottles pt return to us (after removing the label). It's quite easy, really. No reason not to!!!
     

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