Join Together Atlantic County (JTAC), a substance misuse prevention coalition, is partnering with local pharmacies and physicians throughout the county to help them educate their patients on proper medication disposal methods.
Prescription and OTC medication misuse has been one of the main contributors to the opioid epidemic, and has led to addiction, hospitalization, overdoses and even death.
One of the best ways to have a safe community, and to protect the environment in the process, is by disposing of any unwanted, unused and or expired medications by properly disposing of them in a permanent medication disposal drop box or with a medication disposal bag. JTAC staff have been visiting pharmacies and physicians’ offices throughout Atlantic County to distribute materials.
Staff are providing physicians and pharmacies with Deterra drug deactivation disposal bags, informational rack cards, magnets, posters and pharmacy bags that provide information about proper medication disposal as well as information on how to locate one of the seventeen permanent medication drop boxes throughout Atlantic County to dispose of any unwanted, unused and or expired medication.
Information is also being distributed on how the public can receive a free locking medicine cabinet from JTAC to safely secure medications in their homes. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse in 2017, an estimated 18 million people (more than 6 percent of those aged 12 and older) have misused such medications at least once in the past year.
Misuse of prescription drugs is highest among young adults ages 18 to 25, with 14.4 percent reported nonmedical use in the past year. Among youth ages 12 to 17, 4.9 percent reported past-year nonmedical use of prescription medications.
This coalition project is funded by a CARA (Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act) grant from the ONDCP (Office of National Drug Control Policy) and SAMHSA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration).
For more information about JTAC please visit www.jtacnj.org or at 609-272-0101.