Pharmaceutical Waste Reduction Strategies

Maximize shelf life

Drugs are stored at appropriate temperature, light level, moisture, etc. such that their shelf-life is prolonged or maximized. Or a facility may switch to premixed products, which have a longer shelf life than reconstituted products.

Reduces Amount: Yes
Reduces Toxicity: No

Examples of Applying this Strategy

Generic Drug: Succinylcholine Chloride

Succinylcholine was identified as a waste reduction opportunity for the Mercy Health System in Janesville Wisconsin. The useful shelf-life of this drug can be extended by refrigeration.

Proprietary Drug(s): Anectine, Quelicin
Delivery Method(s): Injectable

For more information:

Weber, Racher. "Pharmaceutical Pollution Prevention in Healthcare." SHWEC, University of Wisconsin Extension, 2008. Web. 14 June 2013.

UW Extension SHWEC
161 W. Wisconsin Ave. Suite 6000
Milwaukee, WI, 53203

Phone: (414) 227-3160
Fax: (414) 227-3165

Generic Drug: Propofol

Replacing traditional propofol medication with 28-day propofol in veterinary clinics will reduce anesthesic waste. Traditional propofol has a shelf life of 48 hours maximum once opened. The 28-day propofol contains a benzyl alcohol preservative that allows a shelf life of 28 days.

Proprietary Drug(s): Diprivan, Propofol, Propoven
Delivery Method(s): Injectable

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