Great news for Kanabec County!
Due to the combined efforts of the Substance Abuse Coalition of Kanabec County (SACK), Brian Smith, Kanabec County Sheriff, and Brent Thompson, Director of Pharmacy at FirstLight Health System we have a safe and convenient method of prescription drug disposal.
The new drop box is located in the Kanabec County Jail Lobby providing secure access 24 hours a day, every day of the year.
There are many benefits to having a local prescription drug drop box including keeping narcotics off the street, away from children, as well as protecting our environment and water supply.
Transportation and disposal costs are possible through a contribution from FirstLight Health Systems. (Thank you FLHS!!)
Registration or sign-in is not required. Residents will be buzzed in and simply place their unused prescriptions into the drop box.
The drop box should not be used for sharps, which includes needles, lancets, and syringes. For more information the proper disposal of sharps click on this link for “Safe Disposal Options for Needles and Syringes” from the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency.
From the Kanabec County Times article SACK presents prescription drug drop box
Posted: Thursday, July 17, 2014 by Kirsten Faurie
New drop box keeps drugs out of water, off of streets, FirstLight Health System pharmacy director Brent Thompson explained it is currently against the law for a pharmacy that distributes the medicine to take those prescriptions back. Once they are given to the consumer, the prescriptions become their responsibility to dispose of. At this time the only persons who can legally collect drugs for disposal are members of law enforcement.
It used to be a common practice to toss unused prescription drugs in the trash or flush them down the toilet. However, even when in the trash, people or unsuspecting pets or children could access them. If flushed, those drugs are released into the environment.
Thompson added that some prescriptions that are past their expiration date can be dangerous and regularly cleaning out your stock of medicines can help prevent dangers associated with expired drugs.
Old prescriptions can also become an easy target for people who abuse prescription medications. Regularly cleaning out the medicine cabinet or keeping medicines locked up reduces the risk of them being misused or abused by house guests.
“I think people are becoming more aware of the issue and want to get rid of their drugs responsibly,” said Kanabec County Commissioner Les Nielsen.
To provide a way for Kanabec residents to dispose of their prescriptions, SACK had been hosting drug take back days twice a year at the Coborn’s pharmacy in Mora. The group collected approximately 100 pounds of drugs each take back day and then took those drugs to be incinerated in a licensed facility.
The drop box is for more than just human prescriptions.
Kanabec County Attorney Barb McFadden said she planned to use the drop box to get rid of her pets’ medicine that she didn’t feel comfortable tossing in the trash.
Purchase of the drop box was made possible through a grant from the National Association of Drug Diversion Investigators. The drop box is emptied daily and under jail surveillance to prevent possible theft.
For more information on using, storing, and disposing of prescription drugs safely visit www.AwareRX.com.