GRANITE CITY — Officials announced the city has been awarded a grant from CVS Pharmacy to install a drug collection unit.
The new unit will be located at Granite City Police Department lobby, 2330 Madison Ave., and will provide residents with a safe and environmentally responsible way to dispose of unwanted, unused or expired medication, including controlled substances.
The unit is intended to reduce the amount of unneeded medicine in residents’ homes and decrease prescription drug abuse, which has soared in recent years, especially among teenagers. More than 70 percent of teenagers say it is easy to get prescription drugs from their parents’ medicine cabinets, according to a 2014 Partnership for Drug-Free Kids study.
The new unit will also help Granite City prevent the contamination of local landfills and water supplies from unused medication.
“Safely disposing of unused medication is critical to protecting our children and our environment,” Police Chief Rich Miller said. “Many of the drug deaths in our county are a result of addiction to prescription drugs. Often these pills have been pilfered from friends’ and relatives’ medicine cabinets.
“Granite City is proud to partner with CVS Pharmacy and we thank them for their commitment to help residents reduce the amount of unneeded medicine in our community.”
The unit represents one of 1,000 units CVS and the Medicine Abuse Project (MAP), a five-year initiative of The Partnership for Drug-Free Kids, are providing across the country. This innovative donation program is the largest retail pharmacy effort of its kind to date and supports MAP’s goal to prevent a half million teenagers from abusing prescription medication by the year 2017. CVS is the sole retail pharmacy sponsor of this program, which builds on the company’s Medication Disposal for Safer Communities Program.
“CVS Pharmacy is dedicated to collaborating with organizations like the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids and local law enforcement to prevent the abuse of unwanted and expired medication,” said Josh Flum, senior vice president of retail pharmacy at CVS Health. “The installment of drug collection receptacles is part of our ongoing commitment to battle prescription drug abuse in the U.S. and to help people in the communities we serve on their path to better health.”
CVS also assists law enforcement by supporting local drug takeback events and promoting local drug disposal collection sites. CVS has conducted drug collection campaigns utilizing their retail locations, including several National Drug Take Back Day events. Law enforcement agencies that operate their own ongoing collection site programs also can arrange to have the address and hours of their operations posted in local CVS stores.
Granite City’s new drug collection site is open to the public from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., seven days per week, and drugs can be dropped off with no questions asked. Granite City residents and CVS customers can also inquire about the Medication Disposal for Safer Communities program at the toll-free phone number (866) 559-8830 or visit www.cvs.com/safercommunities.