If you have prescription bottles or any other materials that need to be properly destroyed and disposed of, our sister company, Legal Shred can help.
Just like medical offices, pharmacies carry a lot of sensitive information in their computers. Every patient that fills a prescription at a pharmacy will have their name, date of birth, address, insurance information, and of course a list of medications that have been taken and are currently being used. Once filled, a lot of that information is printed right on the bottle: usually the person’s date of birth, address, and other prescribing information.
For pharmacists, hospitals, and other medical organizations that are governed by HIPAA laws, the issue becomes dealing with not only the information printed on the pill bottles and accompanying handouts, but the drugs themselves. As a source of personal information, the bottles and any labels must be destroyed in a compliant manner. Destroying any drugs that they may contain is covered by separate rules in each state.
Pharmacies are a source for community members to bring unwanted or expired medications for proper disposal. Unused pharmaceuticals are a hazard for abuse and are a threat to the environment if disposed of improperly. At most pharmacies, take-back programs allow individuals to drop off old medications, which are often disposed of in accordance with the law. This includes incineration.
As far as empty pill bottles and printed handouts, it is up to pharmacies and patients to securely and safely destroy the information. There are medical providers that have special machinery for pill bottle shredding so long as they still carry a label on them.
The easiest way to secure your information before destroying an empty pill bottle is to remove the label. It is recommended to then use a permanent marker on them, or scratch off your name and prescription number. Identity thieves can use this information in a number of ways if they get the information off a pill bottle in your trash.
Of course, if you are a healthcare professional that is concerned with pill bottle shredding, our sister company, Legal Shred can offer assistance with with its mobile shredding solutions. Between Red Bags and Legal Shred, we can handle all types of HIPAA compliance issues, from printed documents to electronic devices to destroying patient data. Patients can leave their printed handouts and pill bottles in a shred bin to be securely destroyed during a one-time visit. Red Bags can assist with any unused or expired medication as well.
If you have prescription bottles, medications, or any other materials that need to be properly destroyed and disposed of, let Red Bags and Legal Shred be your one-stop solution.