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Leesburg Police Department Receives CVS Grant For Drug Collection Box

© Leesburg Today - 05/26/2015

In an effort to reduce the amount of unneeded medicine in residents' homes and decrease prescription drug abuse, the Leesburg Police Department on Tuesday installed a drug collection station at its headquarters.

The box, which is available to the public 24 hours a day and seven days a week, comes via a grant from CVS as part of its initiative to reduce prescription medication abuse among children. It's one of 1,000 units CVS and The Medicine Abuse Project are providing across the country.

""Over 50 percent of people on heroin say they got their start with prescription drugs,"" Leesburg Police Chief Joseph Price said. ""Safely disposing of unused medication is critical to protecting our children and our environment.""

According to a 2014 Partnership for Drug-Free Kids study, more than 70 percent of teenagers said it is easy to get prescription drugs from their parents' medicine cabinets. The collection station allows residents to dispose of unwanted, unused or expired medication, including controlled substances. In addition to keeping the medication out of the wrong hands, the collection keeps the drugs out of landfills and water supplies.

""CVS is dedicated to collaborating with organizations like The Partnership for Drug-Free Kids and local law enforcement to prevent the abuse of unwanted and expired medication,"" Josh Flum, senior vice president of retail pharmacy at CVS, said. ""The installment of drug collection receptacles is part of our ongoing commitment to battle prescription drug abuse in the U.S. and to help people in the communities we serve on their path to better health.""

Also on hand at the Leesburg Police headquarters to unveil the box were Loudoun County Health Department Director Dr. David Goodfriend and Leesburg Mayor Kristen Umstattd. Goodfriend said the box would help not just to minimize drug diversion, but also to keep kids from accidental poisonings and overdoses by ""going into the medicine cabinet.""

Umstattd commended the department for being the first in the county to install a container to take in residents' unneeded substances with no questions asked.

""The next stop is the sheriff's office,"" she said.

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