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Press Release - 9/15/2016



Media Contact: Tammy Griffin

Cell: 443-366-2685                                       

Office: 410-219-7480



(September 15, 2016, Salisbury, MD) Drug Free Wicomico, the Wicomico County Drug Abuse Task Force, and the Wicomico County Health Department are pleased to report that 1,257 pounds of prescription drugs have been collected in Wicomico County from July 2015 through June 2016.   This is an increase of 658 pounds over the amount collected in during the same period the previous year. “Prescription medication abuse is a concern among communities across the United States,” says Health Officer Lori Brewster.  “In the U.S., drug overdoses now claim more lives than traffic fatalities,” Brewster continues, “and prescription drugs are a major contributor to those overdoses.” Prescription and over-the-counter medications are the third most commonly abused substances by Americans age 14 and older, after marijuana and alcohol.  Two-thirds of teens who report abusing prescription medicine get them from friends, family, and acquaintances. 

“Keeping prescription medications out of the hands of abusers is key to reducing these types of overdose deaths,” states Brewster. As of July 1, 2016, there are three additional sites with prescription medication drop off boxes, bringing the total number of prescription medication receptacles to nine. Drop off boxes allow community members to safely and anonymously dispose of expired and unused prescription medications.  Drop off sites and times are: 

1.       Apple Discount Drugs in Fruitland (Monday-Friday 8:00-8:00, Saturday 9:00-7:00),

2.       Delmar Police Department (Monday-Friday 8:00-5:00),

3.       Fruitland Police Department (Monday-Friday 8:00-4:00),

4.       Maryland State Police Barracks (24/7)

5.       Mt. Hermon Discount Pharmacy (Monday-Friday 8:00-7:00, Saturday 9:00-8:00)

6.       Pemberton Pharmacy (Monday-Friday 8:30-7:00, Saturday 9-5, and Sunday 11:00-5:00),

7.       Peninsula Regional Medical Center (Emergency Department, 24/7). 

8.       Salisbury Police Department (24/7), and

9.       Wicomico County Sheriff’s Office (Monday-Friday 8:00-5:00).

Personal information should be removed from the original container prior to drop off.  Prescriptions drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and pet medications are accepted.  No liquids, needles, thermometers or bio-hazard materials are allowed.  

Brewster states, “We all can play a part in reducing prescription medication abuse by changing how we monitor, secure, and dispose of these drugs.” The Wicomico County Health Department offers these tips:


?      Note how many pills are in each prescription bottle;

?      Keep track of your refills;

?      If your teen is prescribed a medicine, be sure to control it and monitor the doses and refills;

?      Make sure others, such as grandparents, are aware of the risks. Encourage them to monitor their medications;

?      Talk to other families your youth is involved with about the importance of monitoring and safeguarding their medications.


?      Take prescription medications out of the medicine cabinet and put them in a locked cabinet and/or prescription lock box;

?      Advise others to secure their medications as well.


?      Discard expired or unused prescription and over-the-counter medicines at one of the nine Wicomico County drop off locations;

?      If throwing any medicines in the trash, dispose with undesirable substances such as kitty litter, coffee grounds, etc;

?      Do not flush the medicine down the drain or toilet;

?      Before disposing of prescription bottles, remove identifiable information from the prescription bottle to prevent unauthorized refills.

For more information or to get involved in the effort to reduce prescription drug use/abuse in Wicomico County, please contact the Wicomico County Health Department at (410) 334-3480. 


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