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DEA rule to implement permanent drug disposal plan

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A rule proposed by the Drug Enforcement Administration would implement a permanent plan for prescription drug disposal and help prevent prescription drug abuse.

Sen. Jay Rockefeller, D-W.Va., pushed for the new rule and wrote to DEA Administrator Michele Leonhart asking the DEA to take further action.

"West Virginia faces a troubling prescription drug abuse problem that is fueled in part by excess prescription drugs left in medicine cabinets and household drawers," Rockefeller said. "We've made strides with nationwide Drug Take-Back Days, but we need a permanent solution for the safe disposal of prescription drugs. The DEA's proposed rule marks a step in the right direction, and offers an opportunity to expand options for disposing of drugs properly. Providing a national standard and clear process for safe disposal will help us address the drug abuse epidemic head-on in both the country and our state."

The DEA published a proposed rule, the Secure and Responsible Drug Disposal Act of 2010, which requires the DEA to enforce a safe and lawful disposal method for prescription drugs. The rule will establish national standards for drug disposal and expand available disposal options for controlled substances, including take-back events and new processes for distributors, manufacturers and pharmacies to administer mail-back programs or to offer collection locations.