Area prevention groups to collect unwanted meds

Several Southwest Washington community prevention coalitions are holding drug take back events on Sat., Oct. 26

The vast majority of opioid misuse – 75 percent – starts with individuals using medication that wasn’t prescribed for them. Further, the drugs that are most commonly misused by teens and adults frequently come from family and friends’ home medicine cabinets, according to statistics from the National Substance Abuse and Mental Health Service Administration. 

To combat this issue, several Southwest Washington community prevention coalitions are holding drug take back events on Sat., Oct. 26, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in locations across Clark County.

Community members are encouraged to bring their unused and expired prescriptions and over-the-counter medications for safe and free disposal to any one of the six event sites below.

Drug Take Back Event locations:

Clark County

  • PeaceHealth Southwest Urgent Care, 33rd & Main (South Back Lot), Vancouver
  • Kaiser Permanente Cascade Park, 12607 SE Mill Plain Blvd., Vancouver
  • Battle Ground Police Department, 507 SW 1st St., Battle Ground
  • Washougal Silver Star Search & Rescue, 1220 A St., Washougal
  • Cowlitz Public Safety Department, 31501 NW 31st Ave., Ridgefield (La Center Exit I-5, south of ilani Casino)

Prescription and over-the-counter medications including pills, liquids and inhalers will be accepted. Medications may remain in original containers and labels do not need to be removed. Medications not in original containers will also be accepted. 

Sharps and syringes

Please note that sharps and syringes will only be accepted at Kaiser Permanente Cascade Park and PeaceHealth Southwest Urgent Care.

Proper drug disposal is also an environmental issue. Unused medications can contaminate our drinking water and should not be flushed down the toilet or put in the trash. Drug take back programs dispose of medications properly and safely through the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

Drug take back events in 2018 collected more than 8,300 pounds of unused and unwanted medications from nearly 3,000 individuals in Southwest Washington. This year, numerous coalition and nonprofit partners, as well as county health and law enforcement officials and DEA officials will be on hand to assist with safely disposing of unwanted medications.

Medicine take back events in Southwest Washington are funded in partnership with the Washington State Health Care Authority. Medicine take back programs are the only secure and environmentally sound way to dispose of leftover and expired prescription and over-the-counter medication. Thank you for taking part in keeping our community and environment safe and healthy. This event/activity is not sponsored or endorsed by local school districts.

For more information, visit bit.ly/DrugTakeBackEvent or email Kelley Groen-Sieckmann at kelley.groen@esd112.org.

Information provided by Educational Service District 112.

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