Raising awareness for the safe disposal of pharmaceuticals!

Raising awareness for the safe disposal of pharmaceuticals!

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Sally Cooke started this petition to Pharmacy council of South Africa

In 2017, scientists from the University of the Western Cape discovered fish caught off the Western Cape coastline to be contaminated by antibiotics, pain killers, antiretrovirals, disinfectants, and industrial chemicals. They conducted tests on species of fish such Snoek, Bonita, Hottentot (Cape bream), and Panga, which were sourced from the random daily commercial catches sold at Kalk Bay harbour.

Analgesic/anti-inflammatories Diclofenac and Acetaminophen, the antiepileptic drug Carbamazepine, the antibiotic Sulfamethoxazole, the disinfectant Triclosan, as well as various industrial chemicals found in pesticides, flame retardants, and personal care products were all present in various parts of the fish tested. They found diclofenac (more widely known as its brand name ‘Voltaren’) to have the highest concentration out of all the pharmaceutical compounds.

The increasing levels of pharmaceutical compounds and industrial chemicals in the fish occurs as a result from untreated or under-treated sewage flowing into the ocean. The deposits of these pharmaceutical compounds in the sewage is caused by 2 factors. Firstly, when people consume medications, the medications are not fully metabolised in the body. As a result, the remnants are flushed out the body, into the sewage. Secondary to that, I have discovered that many people choose to flush unwanted/expired medications down the toilet or sinks as a way of disposing them.

This petition has been created in effort to raise awareness on the safest methods of disposing pharmaceuticals. 

 
According to the South African Pharmacy Council, the safest method is through one’s pharmacy. Most consumers are unaware of this system and therefore are not returning unwanted or unused medications. 

In signing this petition, you are:

A) Informed of "return to pharmacy program" 

B) Adding your signature to a petition with the goal of getting the Pharmacy Council of South Africa to implement a mandatory step in the sales process of all pharmaceuticals, which is to ensure every customer is informed of this disposal program, each and every time they purchase pharmaceutical goods. 

Please don't flush medications down the toilet or sink! 

 

 

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