COPENHAGEN — In order to provide a safe way to dispose of unused prescription drugs, the United Prevention Coalition of Lewis County has placed Deterra Containers at area health centers.
Kicking off the four-stop tour earlier this month, Cassie Forbus Coalition Coordinator along with Anita K. Seefried-Brown, project director for the Alliance for Better Communities, joined Alex Hazard of ABC50 and the staff of the Copenhagen Health Center for a ribbon cutting.
“The Deterra Medicine Disposal containers offer a safe reliable drop off for expired or unused prescription drugs,” Cassie Forbus Coalition Coordinator said, noting each container can hold more than 1,000 pills along with liquids and patches.
“We are honored to service the community in any way we can,” said family nurse practitioner Julie L. Emery of the Copenhagen Health Center.
“We appreciate the new opportunity for safe disposal of prescription drugs,” said Dr. Sean P. Harney, chief medical officer for Employed Medical Practices at Lewis County General Hospital. “Serving the community is what we’re all about.”
The UP! Coalition has also distributed Deterra bags for disposal of prescriptions by individuals all in an effort to keep prescription drugs out of the hands of youths in order to prevent abuse and overdoses.
In addition, the access to proper disposal prevents the medications entering groundwater sources. According to a recent study, “32.9% of Lewis County residents reported flushing or throwing away expired or unused medications in the past year.”
Other Deterra prescription drug container take back locations include Lowville Medical Associates, 5402 Dayon St., Lowville; Behavioral Health and Wellness Center, 7550 S. State St., Lowville; South Lewis Health Center, 3926 State Route 12, Lyons Falls; Beaver River Health Center, 9559 Main St., Beaver Falls; and Harrisville Health Center, 14214 Maple St., Harrisville.
Mrs. Forbus noted that Kinney Drugs Pharmacy is also a drop off point for certain prescription drugs. In addition, unused or expired medication can be dropped off at Lewis County General Hospital.
The coalition tries to organize a Take Back Drugs event at least once a year. Mrs. Forbus said the recent one was very successful, collecting 600 pounds of medication.
The UP! Coalition coordinator said the agency hopes to expand on the initial six locations to include the nurse offices at area schools and veterinary clinics.