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Mayor, County Executive: Safe Disposal of Drugs Protects Environment, Families

For more information contact:

George Twigg, (608) 266-4611 (Mayor)
Josh Wescott, (608) 267-8823 (County Executive)

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 6/2/2008

Issued By: County Executive
View only releases from County Executive
Madison – Mayor Dave Cieslewicz and County Executive Kathleen Falk today encouraged everyone to take advantage of the MedDrop program for disposal of out-dated or unwanted prescriptions and over-the-counter drugs. Proper disposal of these substances helps protect the environment by keeping them out of area waters, and protects families by keeping them out of the hands of children and others who should not have access to them.

Falk and Cieslewicz were joined at the event by State Rep. Gary Hebl (D-Sun Prairie), who authored a joint resolution declaring June 7, 2008 “Proper Drug Disposal Day”, and several members of the MedDrop committee that helps fund and organize the program.

“There is a growing concern that improper disposal of drugs and medicines can result in contamination of our local waters,” said Mayor Cieslewicz. “MedDrop is a free and easy way to dispose of these items in a way that makes sure the environment is protected.”

“Besides protecting our waterways from contamination, getting outdated or unwanted drugs out of the house reduces the chances for children or pets to get into the drug or for someone to take the wrong medication,” said County Executive Falk. “The County and City are happy to cooperate to protect our waters and in-home safety.”

The second MedDrop drug disposal program will take place on Saturday, June 7, 2008, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The location of the MedDrop event is the City Transfer Station, 121 E. Olin Avenue, between the Alliant Energy Center and Goodman Pool.

“Our beautiful lakes and streams are some of the most valuable natural resources we have here in Wisconsin,” Rep. Hebl said. “Citizens and public officials must work together to keep unwanted prescription drugs from polluting our Wisconsin treasures. I encourage everyone with unused medications to get involved in Proper Drug Disposal Day by participating in the MedDrop collection that’s being held on Saturday.”

Residents can bring their out-dated or unwanted prescription and over-the-counter medicines in the original container, although personal information may be marked out. Volunteers will dispose of both the medicine and the containers, protecting patient confidentiality. This is a free, drive-through, drop off service.

“Now’s the perfect time for a medicine cabinet check-up,” said Kendra Jacobsen, Executive Director of Madison Patient Safety Collaborative. “It’s good for your home and the environment.”

The 2007 MedDrop was very successful in collecting pharmaceuticals for safe disposal. Highlights include:

-- Number of Cars making drops: 566
-- Controlled substances dropped off: 180.5 lbs (10 5-gallon containers plus 2 14-gallon containers for a total of approximately 78 gallons)
-- Uncontrolled substances: 1,509.5 lbs (27 30-gallon drums of solid/liquids plus 1 30-gallon drum of uncontrolled aerosols for a total of approximately 840 gallons)
-- Total Pounds collected: 1,690.5; (918 gallons)

Additional details regarding the MedDrop program are attached.

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