The abuse of prescription medications continues to be a problem throughout Valdosta and its surrounding communities, as well as throughout the rest of Georgia, and the United States as a whole.
Although there are many efforts that continue to be put in place in order to help reduce the prominence of this particular type of substance abuse, one that is quickly rising in popularity is the availability of regulated prescription drug drop-off locations.
The main purpose of these drug drop-off locations is to give individuals access to a safe means of disposing of their unused, unwanted, or expired prescription medications. Over-the-counter (OTC) medications can also be disposed of at these locations.
The Council on Alcohol and Drugs has provided a comprehensive list of drop-off locations throughout the various counties in Georgia. For individuals in Lowndes County, the following location can be utilized for properly disposing of medications:
Lowndes County Sherriff’s Office
Lowndes County Jail
120 Prison-Farm Road
Valdosta, GA 31601
Additionally, federal regulations now allow pharmacies and hospitals to provide medication collection programs, yet not all do.
In order to raise awareness on the importance of properly disposing of medications, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has also implemented a “National Take-Back Initiative,” wherein annual National Prescription Drug Take-Back Days are held. The U.S. Department of Justice has noted that, in doing so, they are able to “provide a safe, convenient, and responsible means of disposing of prescription drugs, while also educating the general public about the potential for abuse of medications.”
“Think About It” Campaign
The Medical Association of Georgia Foundation, Inc. sponsors a program that is designed to raise awareness on prescription medication abuse in the hopes of providing education and encouraging substance abuse prevention throughout Valdosta and the rest of Georgia. This program, which is known as the “Think About It” Campaign, is comprised of three initiatives. These initiatives include the development of a statewide comprehensive drug policy, safe storage and disposal of prescription drugs, and education for both professionals and the public about the dangers of prescription medication abuse and ways in which it can be prevented.
By joining together with treatment centers, not only in Valdosta, but also throughout the entire state of Georgia, the implementation of these initiatives can serve to bring awareness to the problem of prescription drug abuse, while also reducing the negative stigma that is often correlated with addiction.
The staff at Greenleaf Hospital supports these initiatives and is proud to partner with any and all organizations who strive to bring awareness to the prescription drug abuse epidemic. The knowledgeable staff at Greenleaf is available 24/7 to answer any questions you may have about proper drug disposal or to provide information about treatment options for yourself or a loved one.