Drop-boxes for residents to properly dispose of medications are a success

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An effort to provide an on-going way for residents to properly dispose of prescription medications has been successful in the first year of the program

The Gateway Impact Coalition helped provide a one-day a year drop-off clean out your medicine cabinet program for several years.  But a year ago established drop-boxes at the Clinton, Camanche and DeWitt Police Stations plus the Law Center for people to drop off unneeded prescription drugs anytime.  Kristin Huizinga of the Coalition says the boxes are secure and since they are in a law enforcement agency setting they are monitored.

Huizenga says the drop box program has been well received since starting last year.  She said that in the last year there has been 575 pounds of medications collected at the drop boxes and that is about the same as in the previous one day program.  Since the promotion started about the proper disposal of medications, Huizenga says that in Clinton County there has been 3,333 pounds of medications collected and properly disposed of.   She called that “awesome.”

Huizenga says there are several reasons for promoting proper disposal of prescription drugs. She outlines some of those as reducing the chance of mismedicating because of old prescriptions, the theft of prescription drugs and environmental contamination from improper disposal.

Huizenga said if people are concerned about the identity issue of throwing away a prescription bottle you can put the medication in a baggie.  But she did say that law enforcement agencies would be the only ones handling the material and it is all incinerated, including containers.

She encouraged people to go through their medications and dispose of old and outdated drugs.  She said they’ve tried to make it easy to dispose of the medication and they’ll take care of it.