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Editor: Christopher J. Robinette
Widener Univ. School of Law

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Monday, March 10, 2008

Drugs in Water

The AP found dozens of prescription drugs in the drinking water supplies of various cities. As the story notes, patients' bodies don't absorb all of the relevant compounds (the package insert even specifies absorption, if memory serves), and so some amount of it escapes through urine, and then ends up back in the water system.

Merck's director of environmental technology commented: "There's no doubt about it, pharmaceuticals are being detected in the environment and there is genuine concern that these compounds, in the small concentrations that they're at, could be causing impacts to human health or to aquatic organisms."

No litigation is mentioned in the story, but presumably some folks are poking around thinking about it. Interesting issues of duty and foreseeability.

--BC

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