Critical Investigative Journalism
Q: Do consumers really use or need drop-boxes?
A: In our 26-county pilot neighborhood, the DEA drug take-back initiative occurs every 6 months. Here’s how much medication was collected in a single day during our last event, from just 26 counties:
October 28, 2017:
On April 28, 2018:
Clearly, there's an evidence-based need and desire to dispose of medications. But, as you can guess, our community's need is not biannual. It's daily.
Q: Aren't drop-boxes expensive to install?
A: Compared to the deaths they can potentially prevent? Responsibility doesn’t stop at the pharmacy door. This is the moola the three biggest drug distributors take in every year:
In addition to our neighborhood pharmacies, distributors should step up and do their part to help curb this crisis. As should manufacturers.
Q: Where can a pharmacy get a drop-box? What about disposing of the medications? What if someone might break into their drop-box?
A: Fortunately, over 11% of our local independent pharmacies have already figured it out. As has Walgreens, nationwide, whose advice is only a phone call away. As for security – it's unlikely that a locked box of unknown random medications would be more attractive to a thief than the pharmacy shelves full of known medications several feet away.
Q: Who has access to your medications?
Friends of kids,
Medications in your kitchen, bathroom, drawer at work, car and elsewhere can find their way into curious and/or addicted fingers of family, friends and colleagues. Lock 'em up and dispose of your unused and expired meds.