Prescription drugs accounted for about half of accidental poisoning deaths in the US in 2004, and every day thousands of teenagers use someone else’s prescription drugs to get high for the first time.
Leftover prescription drugs just sitting around in someone’s medicine cabinet are part of the problem. They can be stolen and sold quickly on the street. Or they can be confused for other medications and taken by accident.
As such, the Pennsylvania Medical Society (PAMED) is campaigning to clean leftover medications out of Pennsylvanians’ medicine cabinets. Partnering with Drug Free PA, the City of Allentown, Wegmans, and various government agencies, the organizations will hold a medication clean-up day on April 30, 2011, in Allentown at Wegmans Food Market, 3900 Tilghman Street.
Lehigh Valley residents can legally dispose of their unused prescriptions at this drop-off site.
There is no cost to dispose medications. All funding is provided through a grant.
While the event will collect leftover medications from the public, the drop off site will not collect the following:
- Thermometers containing Mercury or Mercury-based antiseptics such as mercurochrome
- Medications from health facilities or physician offices
- Medical waste
- Household chemicals
In addition to curbing abuse of prescription drugs by teenagers, the medication clean-up campaign will help seniors dispose of unused medications to prevent medication duplication, unauthorized access to medications by family and friends, and confusion over which drugs to take.
Instructions for participants
- Clean out all outdated or leftover medicines from your medicine cabinets and other locations around your house or apartment.
- Keep the leftover medicines in original bottles.
- Use a black marker to remove all personal information from the bottle label. KEEP all medication information readable.
- Visit Wegmans at 3900 Tilghman Street, Allentown, on April 30 from 10 PM to 2 PM to properly dispose of the leftover medications in an eco-appropriate manner.