Management Standards for Hazardous Waste Pharmaceuticals Rule Released

By: Stericycle

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has released a Final Rule for the Management Standards for Hazardous Waste Pharmaceuticals. The EPA will now publish the Final Rule by the end of 2018.

The original proposed rule asked to establish a sector-specific set of regulations for the management of hazardous waste pharmaceuticals by healthcare facilities, pharmacies and reverse distributors. The goal of the Hazardous Waste Pharmaceuticals Rule is to provide standards to ensure the management of hazardous waste pharmaceuticals is safe and workable within the healthcare setting.

Additionally, the proposed rule would make drinking and surface water safer and healthier by reducing the amount of pharmaceuticals entering waterways. The EPA predicts that this would prevent the flushing of more than 6,400 tons of hazardous waste pharmaceuticals annually by banning healthcare facilities from flushing hazardous waste pharmaceuticals down the sink and toilet.

The EPA has indicated that there are no major differences from the original proposed rule.

Six months after publication, the Final Rule will most likely become effective in Alaska, Iowa, Kentucky, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Puerto Rico. All other states will have to adopt the new rules in their existing regulations.

As we wait for the EPA to publish the Final Rule, Stericycle is preparing to complete a comprehensive review and analysis for the final published rule. It will outline the final components of the rule, evaluate and determine the impact on customers and provide an overall summary analysis to the various affected business units.

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