CHATTANOOGA, Tenn.--(EON: Enhanced Online News)--In an effort to fight opioid abuse, Tennessee residents are invited to bring their unused or expired prescriptions to one of more than 100 National Drug Take-Back events being held statewide on April 29 between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.
“It’s important to get rid of old or unused drugs”
The event aims to provide safe, convenient locations to dispose of prescription drugs and other medications and to raise awareness about the potential risks for abuse and misuse of certain medications, such as opioids.
This year, more drug take-back sites are available in Tennessee than ever before, thanks in part to the efforts of the BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Health Foundation-sponsored Count It! Lock It! Drop It! (CLD) program, which has helped place secure, permanent drop-boxes in all 95 counties.
“It’s important to get rid of old or unused drugs,” explains Dr. Andrea Willis, chief medical officer of BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee. “Prescription opioid abuse is a serious public health issue, and more than half of Tennesseans who use prescription painkillers recreationally say they got them from friends and family.”
“These bi-annual events offer a convenient and safe way for individuals to protect themselves and their loved ones from potential and unintentional harm,” said CLD co-developer Kristina Clark. “It’s worth it to take a few minutes to search through medicine cabinets or other storage places and bring unneeded drugs to a Drug Take-Back Day event.”
The Count It! Lock It! Drop It! program, expanded statewide in 2016 with a $1.3 million grant from the BlueCross Health Foundation, encourages community members to:
- Count It! Count pills once every two weeks to monitor theft and help ensure medications are taken properly.
- Lock It! Lock and store them in a secure place where others would not think to look.
- Drop It! Take unused or expired medications to drop boxes located in participating law enforcement offices or pharmacies, or during bi-annual take-back events.
Tennesseans can find their nearest prescription take-back location online at countitlockitdropit.org.
About Count It! Lock It! Drop It!
Count It! Lock It! Drop It! (CLD) is a comprehensive community program for prescription drug abuse prevention that began in Coffee County, Tenn. Today, CLD is actively represented in 44 counties across Tennessee. For more information, visit countitlockitdropit.org.
About BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Health Foundation, Inc.
The BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Health Foundation, Inc. was established in December, 2003 as a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation organized to promote the philanthropic mission of BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee. The foundation awards grants focused on high-impact initiatives across the state, which promote healthy lifestyle choices and help control health care costs for all Tennessee residents. Working with civic and economic partners, the foundation is dedicated to the support of research, innovative programs and creative approaches to improve the health and quality of life of Tennesseans for generations to come.
BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee’s mission is to provide peace of mind through better health. Founded in 1945, the Chattanooga-based company is focused on serving more than 3.4 million members in Tennessee and across the country. BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Inc. is an independent licensee of the BlueCross BlueShield Association. For more information, visit the company's website at bcbst.com.