Permanent MedReturn Drug Collection Unit Installed at the Hood River County Sheriff's Office (Photo)
David Russo, D.O. and Sheriff English with the MedReturn Unit donated by Columbia Pain Management
HOOD RIVER, Ore. - Hood River County residents looking to dispose of excess and expired prescription and over-the-counter medications can now visit the safe and secure permanent drop off location at the Hood River County Sheriff's Office located at 309 State Street.
Columbia Pain Management, PC has partnered with the Sheriff's Office to establish a permanent MedReturn drug collection program in order to reduce the supply of drugs that can potentially harm teens and adults.
According to the 2011 Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration's National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), more than six million Americans abuse prescription drugs. Among youth who are 12 to 17 years old, 7.4 percent report past year non-medical use of prescription drugs. A recent study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention showed Oregon is 4th in the U.S. for long-lasting opioid prescriptions, 16th for high-dose opioid prescriptions, and in the top half for overall opioid prescribing.
"Doctors and other prescribers are not permitted to take-back and dispose of certain kinds of unused pain killers like hydrocodone or morphine," said David Russo, DO, a physiatrist and pain management specialist at Columbia Pain Management, PC in Hood River. "Being able to direct patients to a safe and secure drop-off location where those medications can be properly disposed and destroyed is a great resource for our community."
Properly disposing of excess drugs is everyone's responsibility as a matter of public safety. More than 70 percent of young people abusing prescription pain relievers get them through friends or family, a statistic that includes raiding the family medicine cabinet. Now Hood River citizens won't have to wait for a specific take-back day to clean out their medicine cabinets.
"This is a great example of a community partnership that will benefit the resident's of our county", said Hood River County Sheriff Matt English. "We are very pleased to be able to provide a secure, accessible location to dispose of unwanted medications."
The collection site is open weekdays during business hours 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., excluding holidays. Drugs can be dropped off with no questions asked.
The drug collection unit is produced by MedReturn, LLC of Grafton, WI. MedReturn, LLC is committed to providing a safe, secure and environmentally friendly way to help law enforcement agencies and communities collect unwanted or expired household medication, including prescriptions, over-the-counter drugs and unused pharmaceuticals.
Columbia Pain Management, PC, is the Gorge's only comprehensive and interventional pain management center specializing in minimally invasive and non-operative treatment of spinal pain, musculoskeletal medicine, and the medical rehabilitation of patients with orthopedic and neurological injuries.