Ottumwa– Wapello County Sheriff Mark Miller and Chief Tom McAndrew, announced today the placement of a permanent Medication Dropbox located in the lobby of the Wapello County Law Enforcement Center, 330 West 2nd Street. Chief McAndrew said the drop box is made possible through a small grant from the Governor’s Office of Drug Control Policy to address the increasing problem of prescription drug abuse. The drop box will be accessible to the public during normal business hours.
Steve Lukan, Director of the Governor’s Office of Drug Control Policy said “his office is pleased to partner with the Wapello County Sheriff’s Office and Ottumwa Police Department providing citizens a secure and environmentally responsible option to dispose of unused prescription drugs, thus preventing their potential diversion and abuse. Lukan added “Most prescription drugs that are abused come from friends or family, so cleaning out medicine cabinets can save lives.”
Prescription drug abuse is Iowa’s fastest-growing form of substance abuse, and addiction to powerful pain relievers is also fueling more heroin use. Prescription pain pills and heroin are both opioid drugs. The combination is contributing to an increase in opioid-related overdose deaths in Iowa and the U.S. According to Sheriff Miller, “many people become addicted to prescription drugs because they started using a family member’s leftover prescriptions. Once addicted some of these individuals may then eventually move to heroin to fulfill that addiction.”
Additional information on prescription drug abuse/opioid abuse and properly disposing of unused medication can be found at:
Citizens wishing to utilize the medication drop box are asked to place all medications in sealed non-breakable containers and are requested to not include any “sharps” (syringes or lancets) or any other item that could cause injury to the Department staff servicing the drop box.
Sheriff Mark Miller, Wapello County Sheriff’s Office, 641-684-4350 firstname.lastname@example.org
Tom McAndrew, OttumwaPolice Department641email@example.com
Seven Lukan, Governor’s Office of Drug Control Policy 515-725-0305 firstname.lastname@example.org