Operation Medicine Cabinet- 6/10

Leftover and unwanted medications sitting in your medicine cabinet put communities at risk for diversion, prescription drug abuse and unintentional poisoning. A coalition of groups in Great Falls, including Take Back Drug Task Force, are providing members of the community with the opportunity to dispose of unused medications in Saturday, June 5th. Operation Medicine Cabinet Montana, held in multiple communities across the state, is part of Attorney General Steve Bullock’s effort to reduce prescription drug abuse in Montana.

Montana ranks third in the nation for teen abuse of prescription pain relievers-nearly 10 percent of teens admit to abusing these drugs in the past year, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). The Partnership for a Drug Free America reports that the majority of teens agree that prescription drugs are easier to get than other illicit drugs, including 63 percent who believe that prescription drugs are easy to get from their parents’ medicine cabinet. Additionally, 70 percent of those who use precription meds for non-medical purposes obtain those drugs from a friend or family member.

“With prescription drug abuse on the rise in our state, it is important to closely monitor medications in our homes and get rid of those drugs we no longer have a use for,” said Attorney General Steve Bullock. “By limiting easy access to drugs that are potentially dangerous when misused, we reduce the risk of accidental posonings, illegal diversion and abuse in our community.”

WHAT:   Residents may bring expired or unwanted medications to be disposed of. Participants are encouraged to remove or blackout any personal information on the containers. Drop-offs are confidential and free of charge. The following items cannot be excepted: sharps/needles, chemo/radioactive drugs, or other nonpharmaceutical waste.

WHERE:   105 9th Street South Fire Station

WHEN:   Saturday, June 5; 10:00am – 2:00pm

A map of all events across the state can be found at www.doj.mt.gov/rxabuse.