CEO Corner: How to Add Drug Deactivation and Disposal to Your Wellness Program

Why the return to the office is the perfect time for a workplace drug disposal campaign

I miss the office. There, I said it. I don’t miss the commute or the physical building, but I do miss sharing a communal workplace with my team and having those impromptu discussions that sometimes lead to great ideas but more often just make your day better 

I’m aware that not everyone shares this feeling; in fact, recent data suggests that anxiety about returning to the office after over a year of remote work can trigger mental health and substance abuse issues for employers and workers.

While it’s not always easy to identify the people who are struggling, there are simple proactive steps that employers can take to address these issues and help prevent drug abuse.

According to the CDC, our country is awash in leftover prescription opioids and other pharmaceuticals: Americans were prescribed over 4.5 billion drugs between 2012-2019, yet two-thirds of pills go unused.  Nearly one in three (32%) Americans keep unused prescriptions in their homes, where they are vulnerable to misuse or falling into the wrong hands.

Employers are in a perfect position to help reduce the risk of abuse and the associated costs from workplace accidents, absenteeism, and reduced productivity by educating employees about the importance of proper drug disposal and providing them with an effective at-home solution.

Employers can easily incorporate at-home drug deactivation and disposal resources into their employee wellness plan or coordinate a desk drop of Deterra® Pouches as part of a welcome kit for new employees or those returning to the office. Including Deterra in your health plan alongside controlled substance prescriptions is another cost-effective way to reduce the risk of medication misuse for your employees and their families.

The past 15 months have been full of uncertainty, and the transition back to the office is a crucial time to address workers’ mental health needs. Employers are well-positioned to educate the workforce about the importance of proper drug disposal in preventing drug misuse and offer practical tools to support those who may be struggling with substance abuse.

CEO Jason Sundby

Jason Sundby

Chairman & CEO of Verde Environmental Technologies, Inc.