December 9, 2016
For More Information Contact:
- Kathryn Whitestone, 434-270-4802
Health Educator, Public Information Officer
(Charlottesville, Va.) — On November 21, 2016, State Health Commissioner Dr. Marissa J. Levine declared the Virginia opioid addiction crisis a Public Health Emergency. This action came in response to the growing number of overdoses attributed to opioid use and evidence that Carfentanil – a highly dangerous synthetic opioid used to sedate large animals like elephants – has made its way to Virginia. On average, three Virginians die of a drug overdose every day.
In an effort to prevent opioid overdoses and drug misuse, the Thomas Jefferson Health District is offering free drug disposal kits. These kits will allow individuals to properly deactivate and dispose of medications without contaminating water sources or harming the environment. Proper medication disposal prevents poisoning of children and pets, deters misuse by teens and adults, and avoids health problems resulting from accidently taking wrong or expired medications.
Each biodegradable drug disposal kit can deactivate and destroy up to 45 pills, 6 ounces of liquid, or 6 patches. They are simple to use: add warm tap water, seal the bag, and dispose in the trash can. Drug disposal kits should be used to deactivate and dispose of opioids (narcotics/pain killers such as codeine or morphine).
People can pick up a free drug disposal kit at any of the following health departments:
Charlottesville/Albemarle Health Dept.
1138 Rose Hill Drive
Fluvanna County Health Department
132 Main St., Route 15
Greene County Health Department
50 Stanard Street
Louisa County Health Department
540 Industrial Drive
Nelson County Health Department
4038 Thomas Nelson Highway
For more information about drug addiction, treatment, and local resources, visit www.VaAware.com.