Sustainicum Collection

Consus The aim of the project is to establish a regional science-society network for sustainability innovations in Albania and Kosovo in order to strengthen the connection and collaboration of institutions in the field of higher education, research and practice.

Resource facts

  • Less than 5 students
  • Up to 3 lecture units
  • English, Shqip

Resource Description

Instruction file

Safe disposal of pharmaceutical wastes 2 (Short Version Part 2)(Resource ID: 375)

The teaching resource outline Safe disposal of pharmaceutical wastes (Short Version Part 1, 2 and 3) describes the draft of a teaching resource consisting of 3 parts, that has been developed to make students looks at their own methods of pharmaceutical waste disposal, as well as that of pharmaceutical industries in both the public and private sector, and to realise the damage it is having on both the environment and the economy. Students will be introduced to the FDA recommendations for safe disposal of pharmaceutical wastes and will present their suggestions of both safe and sustainable methods of disposal to the stakeholders. These teaching resources will incorporate but are not limited to the following methods: Mental Mapping, Debating, Case Study Teaching, Researching, Educational Games, a Focus Group and a Discussion. The set describes three independent teaching resources, which are designed to be completed one after another (but not necessarily), these include: 1. Mental Map – How do you dispose of Pharmaceutical Waste? and a Debate 2. Case Study Teaching – Comparison of the Public and Private Sector 3. An Educational Game and a Focus Group Safe disposal of pharmaceutical wastes (Short Version Part 1, 2 and 3) is based (and slightly modified) on the Teaching Resource, “Safe disposal of waste pharmaceuticals - medicine take back programs” The original teaching resource was split into several parts to make it easier to introduce new ideas, teaching styles and teaching methods into lectures, in addition to the original lecture content. All parts do not need to be completed.


Part 2 – Case Study Teaching – Comparison of the Public and Private Sector

Students will work in groups of 2 – 3 and identify the different waste disposal methods used by the public and private sector pharmaceutical industries. They will research the FDA recommendations and compare these recommendations to what is actually being done. The group will be asked to create a plan of sustainable waste disposal strategies that will be presented in part 3. The students will discuss what stakeholders will be invited from the public and private sector pharmaceutical companies.


Main Text:

The aim of this resource is to raise awareness of the problem of expired and unwanted drugs, using the methods outlined in this resource, the students will try to figure out what is happening with the expired drugs that are accumulating in pharmaceutical industries, and even look at their own methods of disposal.

 The pharmaceutical industry develops, produces, and markets drugs or pharmaceuticals for use as medications. When this medicine is not used by the patients it becomes a waste that has to be disposed of, something which is not being done correctly, and is causing serious harm to both the economy and the environment.

 The teaching methods used aim to identify mistakes that are being made by all members of society when disposing of pharmaceutical waste, with the hope of creating an outline of sustainable methods of disposal for both industries and the wider community.

Integration of Social Stakeholders
The role of all stakeholders on this module is to provide us with information to change the way of disposing of unwanted pharmaceuticals. The stakeholders will play an active role, providing case studies and participating in a focus group.
•It allows students to be exposed to new environments in order to increase their depth of understanding;
• Hands-on experience which is critical for skill development
• Encourages students to appreciate diverse landscapes and helps them recognise the importance of conserving and preserving the environment
• Students will have some idea of pharmaceutical wastes, what they should do in the future, and they will be a great source of information for others the community
•Mutual learning for students and business stakeholders
•Confidentiality problems – students may be inclined to disclose information to competitors.
•Difficult to arrange a visit that suits all stakeholders
Learning Outcomes
•Identify unsustainable methods of waste disposal in the case studies
•Research the FDA recommendations of how pharmaceutical waste should be disposed
•Prepare a set of questions for the stakeholders
Relevance for Sustainability
It is directly related to safety and environmental protection as it:
-Prevents poisoning of children and pets
-Deters misuse by teenagers and adults
-Avoids health problems from accidentally taking the wrong medicine, too much of the same medicine, or a medicine that is too old to work well
-Keeps medicines from entering streams and rivers when poured down the drain or flushed down the toilet
Related Teaching Resources
No specific previous knowledge / related resources required
Preparation Efforts
Preparation Efforts Description
Preparation and sourcing of case studies from pharmaceutical industries
Credit/Certification Description
Sources and Links

Original Teaching Resource - http://sustainicum.at/en/modules/view/301

Funded by
This teaching resource, realised within the project ConSus, has been funded with the support of the TEMPUS of the European Union. The contents reflect the views of the authors, and the European Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.

Comments Write Comment


Samantha Prior
This teaching resource is allocated to following University:
UL - University of Limerick
University of Limerick


Creative Commons

Teaching Tools & Methods

  • Case study