Drug take back day reclaims 81 pounds of unused medication

04_drugs_8078TAKE BACK  — April 30 at Olson’s Drug, the public had the opportunity to bring unused and outdated prescription drugs to have them disposed of. In all there were 81 pounds of various drugs turned in. Helping with project, in front from the left is Brittany Greyn, Erica Grubb, Cynthia Grubb R.N. and in back is Pete McKeone and Eddy Erickson from the PCSO.  I-O Photo by Barb Endler





On April 30, the Pondera County Sheriffs’ Office, Olson’s Drug, Pondera County Health Department and Pondera Medical Center partnered to bring the National Drug Take Back Event to Pondera County.

Held at Olson’s Drug in Conrad, the event is designed to take back unused and expired prescription and non-prescription drugs from the public.

Spearheading the Montana effort is the State Attorney General’s office, who states that “prescription drug use is a factor in the deaths of over 300 Montanans a year”.

Across the state numerous sites were open during the day to take back prescription drugs. Why? In a 2007 survey, it was reported that almost one in 10 — 9.6 percent — of Montana teens aged 12 to 17 have reported abusing prescription pain relievers. That is the third-highest rate for teens in the country.

Promotion and development of the project were done by area teens Brittany Greyn and Erica Grubb, juniors at Conrad High School, in cooperation with the Health Department.

“The promotion made all the difference; locally our site collected 81 pounds of unused and expired prescription meds. It was very successful.” stated Cynthia Grubb, RN CLC, Pondera County Health Nurse.

The collected drugs are then retrieved by the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) to be properly and safely destroyed.

Ed Erickson, Pondera County Sheriff’s Deputy, who worked the event, reminds people of the steps the DEA recommends to dispose of prescriptions between these events.

Take your prescription drugs out of their original containers, mix drugs with an undesirable substance, such as cat litter or used coffee grounds, put the mixture into a disposable container with a lid, such as an empty margarine tub, or into a sealable bag, conceal or remove any personal information, place the sealed container with the mixture and the empty drug containers in the trash.

Information including how to talk to your teen about prescription abuse and how to keep your own medicine cabinet safe can be found at invisibleepidemic.com .