Patients destroying pain meds? - page 2

by melissa_rn

3,971 Views | 14 Comments

Just wondering how other clinics handle the situation of destroying pain meds. For example, say a patient was prescribed Percocet, but they had a reaction to it, so the doctor wants them to get rid of the Percocet before giving... Read More


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    Quote from melissa_rn
    Just wondering how other clinics handle the situation of destroying pain meds. For example, say a patient was prescribed Percocet, but they had a reaction to it, so the doctor wants them to get rid of the Percocet before giving them a prescription for Vicodin. I know the pharmacy won't take meds back...and the clinic can't take the meds...how can you be sure the patient will destroy them? Can you make them destroy them AT the clinic (kitty litter/coffee grounds style)? (But then what do you do with them once destroyed?)
    I've been a nurse in NE since 1977. I have never had a MD or PA request patient destroy a previous medication before ordering another one. My family have never been told this either. I am currently employed in ambulatory surgery. I see MD's write different scripts all the time without requesting destruction of the other. So not much help, I guess.
  2. 1
    Quote from kerbear829
    I've been a nurse in NE since 1977. I have never had a MD or PA request patient destroy a previous medication before ordering another one. My family have never been told this either. I am currently employed in ambulatory surgery. I see MD's write different scripts all the time without requesting destruction of the other. So not much help, I guess.
    I've never heard of this either. Is it a regional thing, perhaps?

    Because... The patient PAID for the medication. So theoretically it BELONGS to them regardless of whether or not they can continue to take it due to allergy/intolerance, etc.

    I mean, at its heart, the OP's question is kind of a legal question, isn't it? :X
    Last edit by Sadala on May 2, '13 : Reason: clarification
    tewdles likes this.
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    I believe that we may request that the patient destroy the meds and offer to assist them.
    We must accept their word on the destruction unless we help.
    As stated before, the patient owns the meds and may do with them as he/she pleases.
    It is illegal for anyone to be in possession of medications prescribed for another, unless that is part of their professional function/role.
    If we have knowledge that the patient or their family members are endangering themselves or others with the medications, HIPAA allows (even requires) that we report that to the authorities.

    Try not to make yourself crazy over something that you really can't control...good luck.
  4. 0
    Quote from Sadala
    I've never heard of this either. Is it a regional thing, perhaps?

    Because... The patient PAID for the medication. So theoretically it BELONGS to them regardless of whether or not they can continue to take it due to allergy/intolerance, etc.

    I mean, at its heart, the OP's question is kind of a legal question, isn't it? :X
    Yes, it does belong to them, but the physician has concerns over the patient being in possession of several different narcotics, and has chosen not to write a new Rx till the old meds are disposed of
  5. 0
    That sounds like perhaps the MD needs to ask the patient to bring the meds to the clinic then and see to the disposal.


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