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COMBAT THE OPIOID CRISIS WITH DETERRA SYSTEM

Leftover prescription drugs fuel the U.S. opioid crisis at the local, state and national levels. Public data, including new government studies and reports in medical literature, shows the U.S. continues to be flooded with opioid prescriptions, with enough prescriptions written each year for half of all Americans to have one.

Law enforcement and government agencies can help prevent misuse and abuse of opioids and other leftover prescription drugs by adding Deterra to their drug disposal and substance abuse prevention efforts. Deterra has a proven community impact  and complements other disposal methods to increase safe disposal behavior.

Variety of Deterra Products

DETERRA DRUG DEACTIVATION SYSTEM

The patented Deterra® System deactivates prescription drugs, pills, patches, liquids, creams and films. Deterra renders them inert, unavailable for misuse and safe for the environment. In a simple 3-step process, a user deactivates the drugs by putting them in a Deterra pouch or container, adding water, sealing, shaking and throwing it away. It’s truly that simple.

Resources for evidence-based prevention with Deterra

Deterra Grant Guide

Deterra Grant Guide

We’ve put together a free guide to help you navigate the world of grant funding. It includes sample language and evidence to support your grant application, links to funding sources, and useful tips for including drug deactivation and disposal into your prevention efforts.

Summit County Case Study

Deterra Case Studies

Deterra System is used by nonprofits, government agencies, healthcare providers, and pharmacies nationwide to safely destroy unused medication. Browse our case studies to see how others like you are using Deterra to prevent medication misuse in their communities.

0  billion
opioid prescriptions dispensed between 2012-2017
0
Americans die every day from drug overdoses
0 %
of those addicted to heroin reported they first used Rx opioid
0
Americans died from drug overdoses in 2020

Calculate the Community Impact of Deterra

Use our ROI calculator to see how adding Deterra to your prevention program can reduce the societal costs associated with opioid misuse. You can also view an example model in How to Reduce the Cost of the Opioid Crisis with At-home Drug Disposal or contact us for a free custom report.

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Deterra is trusted by drug abuse prevention & drug disposal policy makers

The Deterra solution is the only answer for safe, permanent medication disposal and is trusted by numerous organizations dedicated to ending the opioid crisis. Our advisory council and board of directors include drug abuse prevention leaders who advocate for safe drug disposal nationwide.

CADCA and DEA Educational Foundation Endorsement Letters

Deterra is Endorsed by CADCA and the DEA Educational Foundation

Deterra System is endorsed by Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America (CADCA) and the DEA Educational Foundation for the deactivation and disposal of unused medication. Deterra is the only product that either organization has ever endorsed. Read the full endorsement letters to learn why Deterra is trusted above other products for safe, permanent at-home disposal.

We firmly believe that prevention is needed now more than ever. Many people misusing opioids get them from family and friends or the home medicine cabinet, so if we can get unused drugs disposed of properly then we can prevent people from ever getting started and prevent this problem before it ever starts. More and more people are beginning to understand that they need to dispose of these medicines, but they don’t know how. So we’re introducing them to an environmentally sound, safe and easy way to dispose of their medicines.
All Deterra Products

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Protect your citizens from the threat of overdose and the misuse of prescription drugs by providing Deterra Drug Deactivation and Disposal Pouches, Containers and Kits in your community. It’s a simple, cost-effective way to save lives and fight addiction.

Deterra System Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

The Deterra Drug Deactivation System is the simplest and most effective way to dispose of medication at home or in a clinical setting to keep unwanted prescription and over the counter drugs out of the wrong hands and prevent environmental contamination. Below, you’ll find answers to some of the most frequently asked questions we receive about Deterra products and at-home drug disposal.

1
How is Deterra different from its competitors?

Deterra is the only at-home drug disposal system that is scientifically proven to permanently deactivate and destroy drugs, rendering them unavailable for abuse and misuse.

  • Our technology is protected by 11 U.S. patents and 34 international patents and cannot be replicated by others.
  • Deterra contains enough activated carbon to permanently deactivate the amount of medication claimed on the label. Other carbon-based disposal products may not, leaving medications available for misuse and abuse.
  • We don’t just mask medications in a gel or liquid; our patented approach completely destroys pills, patches, liquids, creams and films.
  • Deterra Pouches contain a smaller percentage of plastic when disposed of than competitor products. 1

 

1 Compared to Deterra products, competitor products contain a higher percentage of plastic when disposed of: DisposeRx® 59%; NarcX® 78%; Rx Destroyer™ 68%; Drug Buster® 67%

2
How does the Deterra Drug Deactivation System work?

Each patented Deterra Pouch contains a water-soluble inner pod containing proprietary activated carbon. To dispose of prescription or over the counter medications, a user places the drugs in the pouch and adds water, which dissolves the inner pod and releases the activated carbon. The carbon binds to the active ingredients in the medications. Once deactivated, the drugs are permanently and irreversibly destroyed, unavailable for misuse and safe for disposal in the normal trash.

To learn more about the science behind Deterra, visit our Science and Research section. For how-to videos and instructions for how to use the Deterra Drug Deactivation System to dispose of medications, visit our Resources section.

3
What drugs will Deterra deactivate?

The Deterra® Drug Deactivation System will deactivate organic medications including opioids.  However, Deterra will not adsorb biologics, such as vaccines and immunotherapeutics which are typically administered in a healthcare setting.  Additionally, inorganic medications, such as antacids, lithium and iron supplements will not be adsorbed.

If your medication has specific disposal instructions, please follow the directions as given. Consult authorities or your pharmacist for more specific questions.

4
Does Deterra come in multiple sizes?

Yes, Deterra is available in multiple sizes. Visit our products page or contact a Deterra representative at (612) 568-1128 to determine which size will best meet your needs.

5
How many drugs can Deterra containers and pouches deactivate at a time?

The recommended capacity varies by size and is listed on each Deterra pouch or container. Please always follow the directions on the back of the Deterra Drug Deactivation System.

6
How much does Deterra cost?

On a per-pill basis, Deterra is the least costly at-home, permanent deactivation option. Our Medium Pouch (MP) starts at $3.89 per unit when you buy direct; volume discounts are available on quantities of 100,000 or more. Please call us at (612) 568-1128 for a custom quote or request a quote online.

7
Have government agencies endorsed Deterra?

Deterra is officially endorsed by the DEA Educational Foundation and Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America (CADCA) for unused drug deactivation and disposal.

Deterra is the only product that CADCA has endorsed in its 30-year history. Both CADCA and the DEA Educational Foundation cite Deterra’s strong scientific backing and proven effectiveness as reasons why Deterra products are trusted over other products on the market.

Updated FDA guidelines for drug disposal include at-home medication disposal products as a safe, convenient way to properly dispose of unused medicine.

8
How can I comply with local environmental regulations?

At-home drug disposal is generally unregulated by federal, state and local authorities. Local regulations may vary, please consult authorities or your pharmacist with specific questions. Deterra is not for use with drugs that are supplied with specific disposal instructions. Different laws may apply to healthcare or other regulated facilities.

9
Can’t I just flush or “sink” leftover medications?

Generally, most medications should not be flushed. Water treatment facilities struggle to filter out all pharmaceutical drugs from the water. As of 2014, there were over 1,500 published reports of the occurrence of pharmaceuticals in sewage, surface waters, ground waters, and elsewhere. One study found 47 different pharmaceutical drugs in source water samples and 37 different drugs in water after moving through water treatment plants across the U.S. Because of these findings, most federal, state and local authorities are now recommending (and many requiring) that pharmaceuticals NOT be disposed of in the toilet or sink.

10
What about mixing unused medications with coffee grounds, cat litter, or sawdust? 

These common but ineffective methods of medication disposal harm the environment and maintain the integrity of the active drugs. Medications are not completely destroyed if you use these temporary methods – abuse can still occur. Cat litter, coffee grounds, and sawdust may make the drug undesirable but do not deactivate the drugs. Once in the landfill, these drugs may potentially leach into the ground and into the water. Third-party testing proves that the proprietary activated carbon in Deterra deactivates the drugs rendering them inert and safe for the environment.

11
How does at-home disposal with Deterra compare with other disposal options like secure drop boxes or drug take back programs?

Not everyone has easy access to drug take-back sites. According to research from the American Academy of Family Physicians, those in rural areas had an 87% higher chance of receiving an opioid prescription compared to those in metropolitan areas but are located further away from take back locations. If there aren’t safe medication disposal sites near you, you can dispose of medication at home in a convenient and environmentally sound way with Deterra.

 

In addition, there is some debate about the effectiveness of drug take back programs to curb drug misuse. Research published in JAMA Surgery  found that less than 15% of patients given education on drop-off sites disposed of their drugs in that manner.

 

Deterra’s goal is to increase options for safe and effective drug disposal and reduce the number of unused medications in the world. Our product complements alternative disposal methods, like drop-off sites, community drug take-back programs or throwing medications in the trash by offering an at-home disposal option.

12
Why is Deterra better for the environment? Aren’t we just adding another plastic bag to landfills?

Deterra is environmentally sound through the entire product life cycle. From using 100% wind-generated power in production of the plant-based pouches to the non-toxic organic ingredients to its innovative pouch design, the product:

  • Provides a convenient and immediate alternative to flushing or discarding medications and prevents still-potent drugs from contaminating our water supply and landfills through activated carbon adsorption.
  • Has a smaller carbon footprint due to its plant-based packaging. The packaging is USDA Certified, 50% or more bio-based, and has received the I’m green™ plastic certification.
  • Deterra Pouches are manufactured in a factory built to LEED® Silver sustainable building guidelines on equipment powered by 100% wind-generated electrical energy and are printed using an Expanded Color Gamut Process to reduce ink consumption and waste.
  • Deterra 1.0 Containers are comprised of 25% Post-Consumer Recycled (PCR) material.

To help educate users on the importance of proper drug disposal for the environment and how to use the Deterra® Drug Deactivation System, we offer free educational materials for consumers and dispensers. See resources.