The Clayton Police Department, in partnership with Safe Kids Johnston County, is helping citizens safely dispose of unused or expired medications.
Operation Medicine Drop (OMD) is scheduled for Friday, April 23, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. To participate, gather any unwanted medications and drop them off at the Clayton Police Station, located at 315 E. Second St. All varieties of medications will be accepted, including prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, or veterinary medications.
The Johnston County Operation Medicine Drop event is sponsored by Safe Kids Johnston County in partnership with Clayton Police Department, the Johnston County Opioid Task Force and the Poe Center for Health Education.
Clayton Police Lt. Jason Hutchins said that Operation Medicine Drop is just one way to help the community get rid of leftover prescription drugs before they become a problem.
The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) 2019 National Survey on Drug Use and Health found that 9.7 million people misused prescription pain relievers, 4.9 million people misused prescription stimulants, and 5.9 million people misused prescription tranquilizers or sedatives in 2019.
The study also showed that a majority of misused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, often from the home medicine cabinet.
Misuse of prescription drugs is not only a national crisis. The North Carolina Office of the State Fire Marshall, Injury Prevention reports that an average of four people per day are dying from overdose in N.C., with 79 percent of those deaths involving some type of opioid.
Lt. Hutchins said that officers will be on site to collect the medications. The drugs will then be taken to the State Bureau of Investigation for safe and proper disposal.
According to the SBI, North Carolinians have safely disposed of approximately 80,600 pounds of pills at Operation Medicine Drop events from 2013 to 2018.