From Brent Cooper:
Lawrence County recently signed on to Count It! Lock It! Drop It!(CLD), a comprehensive community program for prescription drug abuse prevention. As a CLD community, Lawrence County joins 58 out of 95 counties statewide aboard the educational and grassroots program.
In June 2016, the BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Health Foundation approved a grant to fund the program’s expansion to areas identified as “hot spots,” which are counties with high numbers of prescriptions dispensed, overdose deaths and babies born with neonatal abstinence syndrome.
The program suggests three simple steps that anyone can practice to keep their medications out of the wrong hands:
Count pills every two weeks to monitor theft and help ensure medications are taken properly;
Lock and store medications in a secure place where others would not think to look; and
Dispose of unused or expired medications at drop boxes or during take-back events.
“Prescription drug misuse has reached epidemic levels in the state of Tennessee,” said Kristina Clark, CLD project manager. “Becoming a CLD community is an easy way for local law enforcement and substance abuse prevention coalitions to encourage their residents to closely monitor their prescriptions, especially ones for opioids.”
Communities that have recently joined the program include:
“We are proud of the program’s success so far, but we know there is more work to do,” said Roy Vaughn, executive director of the BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Health Foundation. “It’s exciting to have these new communities join the fight to combat one of the state’s most concerning public health issues.”
In addition, CLD partnered with the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation to locate a drug disposal drop box in all 95 counties.
For more information on joining Count It! Lock It! Drop It! ™ or to locate a drop box, visit www.countitlockitdropit.org.