Boise Police Department
News Release

Michael F. Masterson
Chief of Police


Contact: Lynn Hightower
Communications Director
570-6180

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Thursday, December 10, 2009

New Pharmaceutical Disposal

New Pharmaceutical Disposal

     Boise, Dec. 10, 2009 - Boise Police, Garden City Police, and the Ada County Sheriffs Office are now offering a free disposal of over the counter and prescription pharmaceuticals. The pharmaceutical collections join the same program started in Meridian Oct. 1, 2009.

     Starting today, Dec. 10, 2009, unwanted medications and old prescriptions can be dropped off in the large, bright green bins placed in the lobbies at each of three new locations:

- Boise City Hall West, Boise Police administration, 333 N. Sailfish Pl, Boise
- Garden City Police Station, 301 East 50th Street, Boise
- Ada County Sheriffs Office - 7200 Barrister Dr., Boise.

What Citizens Need to Know about Prescription Med Disposal:

- Medications must be bagged.
- Liquid containers must be sealed in plastic bags to prevent spills.
- Please do not leave items that wont fit in the drop box chute. Ask at the counter for assistance if you have a larger item for disposal.

    Items NOT accepted are:
Needles, lancets, pen needles, aerosol cans, bloody or infections waste, hydrogen peroxide, thermometers and IV bags.

Why is proper disposal of mediation important?

    Answer: Public health and safety. Proper disposal of prescription meds keeps potential contaminants out of our water supply; and keep drugs that can be misused away from those who would abuse them.

    "By participating in this program, citizens will protect our water quality and reduce the potential for medication mistakes and misuse in the community," City of Boise Public Works Director Neal Oldemeyer.

    "Once we started to realize the environmental impacts of flushing, it no longer became a disposal option, leaving residents confused about how to properly manage their unneeded prescription drugs," Oldemeyer said. "As our community grows the amount of these pharmaceuticals flushed into the sewer system will only increase unless alternative disposal options like this collection program are developed."

    "Any drug abuse can cost someone their future, their family or career, their freedom, maybe even their life. Its unhealthy, unsafe and illegal." said Boise Police Deputy Chief Jim Kerns.

    "We at police departments everywhere see the misery, the crime and the consequences associated with drug abuse. Hopefully, with the help of these green bins, we can prevent some of that harm, and spare some family the agony that comes with drug abuse." Said Deputy Chief Kerns.

Meridian's success:
    

    The prescription disposal program began October 1st for the citizens in the City of Meridian. Capt. John Overton from the Meridian Police Department says the program has already collected between 300 and 400 lbs of unwanted prescription drugs, many with labels dating back to the mid-80's, one as old as 1975.

    "People knew these shouldn't go in the landfills, so they waited for a safe way to dispose of the drugs. Now we're providing that opportunity for them," said Capt. Overton.

About prescription drug abuse:

    According to the Office of National Drug Control Policy, abuse of prescription pain killers now ranks second-only behind marijuana-as the Nation's most prevalent illegal drug problem among people of all ages.

    A number of national studies show the intentional abuse of prescription drugs occurs from the same medications many of us have in our own homes, such as pain relievers, tranquilizers, stimulants and sedatives, including but not limited to Ritalin, Dexedrine, OxyContin, Darvon, Vicodin, and Valium.

    The National Institutes of Health estimates 43 percent of hospital emergency admissions for drug overdoses (nearly 500,000 people) happened because of misused prescription drugs. This type of drug abuse is increasing partially because of the availability of drugs. There may also be a perception, especially among younger people, that prescription drugs are safer than illegal street drugs. Most people dont lock up their prescription medications, nor do they discard them when they are no longer needed for their intended use, making them vulnerable to theft or misuse.

    Experts recommend we clean out our medicine cabinet at least once a year.

More on the new prescription med disposal program:

    Medications will be collected from the green bins daily by trained personnel from each police agency. The medication s will be transported to a secure site in Boise by Ada County Sheriffs Deputies and Idaho State Police, then sent to a secure site in Utah for incineration.

    The Boise, Garden City, Ada County program is for residential use only. Medications from commercial facilities are prohibited by law.

    Boise City Police at 333 N. Sailfish, and the Garden City Police Department at 301 E 50th are open 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. Monday thru Friday.

    The Ada County Sheriffs Office is at 7200 Barrister Dr. and is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Visit www.curbitboise.org/hhw or call 384-3901 for more information.