CVS said Tuesday that 22 drug disposal units will be installed at CVS Pharmacy locations in South Carolina over the next few weeks. These will add to the 24 CVS medication disposal kiosks donated to police and sheriff departments statewide.
South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson, State Rep. Chip Huggins and Lexington Police Chief Terrence Green attended the launch of the program at a CVS Pharmacy in Lexington, S.C.
“With a presence in nearly 10,000 communities across the country, we see firsthand the impact of the alarming and rapidly growing epidemic of opioid addiction and misuse,” Thomas Moriarty, executive vice president, chief policy and external affairs officer and general counsel at CVS Health, said in a statement. “Expanding our safe medication disposal efforts here in South Carolina is an extension of the initiatives in place across our company to fight the opioid abuse epidemic and fulfill our purpose of helping people on their path to better health.”
The CVS medication disposal kiosks help foster proper and timely disposal of opioids and expired, unused and unwanted medications that could be diverted or misused if left in people’s homes, the company noted.
“We know that opioids and other dangerous drugs often end up in the wrong hands after being taken out of parents’ and grandparents’ medicine cabinets,” Wilson stated. “We appreciate CVS’ efforts to help fight the opioid epidemic by giving people a safe and easy way to dispose of unwanted medications.”
Besides the CVS Pharmacy in Lexington, the new medication disposal units are being rolled out to CVS stores in Anderson, Bishopville, Charleston, Cheraw, Columbia (two locations), Florence (two locations), Greenville (three locations), Greer, Inman, Irmo, Myrtle Beach, North Charleston, Rock Hill, Simpsonville, Spartanburg, Summerville and Winnsboro.
“Prescription drug abuse is a major public health epidemic in our state,” commented Huggins, a member of the state’s House Opioid Abuse Prevention Study Committee. “Programs like the one CVS Health is announcing today are integral in helping to avoid the diversion of unused prescription medicines, which can help reduce and prevent their misuse.”
Nationwide, CVS has donated more than 800 units to police departments, collecting more than 125 metric tons, or 270,000 pounds of unwanted medication. In September, the company announced plans to expand the deployment of the drug disposal containers to 750 CVS Pharmacy locations across the country.
“We see the impact that opioid abuse has on our community every day,” Green stated. “We commend CVS Health for this important step in helping combat the opioid epidemic by making it easier for this community and others throughout the state to dispose of their unused medicines.”