Please write one paragraph discussion post response to this post: An interesting topic of an environmental health concern that many of us overlook is Medication Disposal
Please write one paragraph discussion post response to this post: An interesting topic of an environmental health concern that many of us overlook is Medication Disposal. “The chemical properties of drugs present a potential risk to public health and the environment. Their waste has some components that are difficult to decompose, which can contaminate the soil and water. This contamination is still a subtle form of pollution, as from 33% to 90% of all medicines consumed are excreted in the urine, and inject able drugs are eliminated through feces and urine in their original form, which can be active or inert metabolites.” (de Oliveria Bandeira et. al. 2019) There are two major ways these drugs are making their way into our soil and water system; improper disposal and through human feces and urine. Because our bodies do not fully breakdown these drugs when they leave our bodies there are still small amounts that when excreted are able to leach their way into our soil and water supplies. When these are brought into the environment the negative effects are endless and dangerous. For example, “People are not the only ones to be affected by the incorrect disposal of medicines, animals also suffer from this pollution, because some drugs, such as estrogens, compromise the endocrine system of aquatic organisms, feminizing male fish, thus generating an imbalance in nature.” (de Oliveria Bandeira et. al. 2019). These drugs are messing with homeostasis of the planet. “Antibiotics are a class of drugs that are extremely harmful to the environment, because when there are environments exposed or contaminated by these drugs, the bacteria present may acquire resistance to these substances, since these organisms have genetic material with high mutation capacity.” (de Oliveria Bandeira et. al. 2019). These two are just small examples of the harm that is done when these medications find their way into the earth. Some of this is inevitable due to the fact that it is being excreted from our bodies. But as Nurses a huge impact we can have is making sure that we are properly disposing of any medications we have to. “A study carried out with nurses in four municipalities of the Mato Grosso State showed that eight of ten professionals interviewed reported not knowing the stages of management and final disposal of the health service waste generated in the units in which they were acting.” (de Oliveria Bandeira et. al. 2019) This needs to change nursing staff needs to be educated of the proper procedure for disposing of medication as well as the impact that is done by not. This is a hazard that policy is always changing on but it is our responsibility as the nurse to care and make sure we are doing our best to keep these medications out of our soil and water. Reference de Oliveira Bandeira, E., Gautério Abreu, D. P., Piveta de Lima, J., Silva da Costa, C. F., Rodrigues da Costa, A., & Fernandes Martins, N. F. (2019). Medicine dispoasal: a socio-enviromental and health issue. Revista de Pesquisa: Cuidado e Fundamental, 11(1), 1–10. https://doi-org.ezproxy.snhu.edu/10.9789/2175-5361.2019.v11i1.1-10 less
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