CVS opioid disposal kiosks
PHARMACY

CVS Health expands Virginia drug disposal

BY David Salazar

CVS Health is growing the presence of safe medication disposal efforts in West Virginia CVS Pharmacy locations. Statewide, the company said it would be installing 32 new disposal units in stores, which add to the 64 units it has already donated to local law enforcement departments.

“Every day, our pharmacy teams see firsthand the impact of the alarming and rapidly growing epidemic of opioid addiction and misuse,” said Thomas M. Moriarty, Chief Policy and External Affairs Officer, CVS Health. “Expanding our safe medication disposal efforts here in Virginia is an extension of the many 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.”

A recent launch event at a Richmond store included Virginia attorney general Mark Herring, Chesterfield deputy police chief Lt. Col. Dan Kelly, addiction specialist Peter Breslin and the CEO of the nonprofit McShin Foundation, Honesty Bracket Liller. The attendance of the various organizations combating the opioid crisis highlighted the necessity of a community approach.

“I am excited to see CVS Health stepping up and taking the initiative to help with this epidemic,” Liller said. “This is a community problem and we all need to work together to help save lives.”

Nationwide, CVS health has unveiled 750 safe medication disposal units in-store alongside other enterprise efforts undertaken through its CVS Caremark PBM and outreach from its Pharmacists Teach program. The educational outreach program has brought information about the dangers of abusing prescription drugs to more than 300,000 teens nationally, including almost 13,000 in Virginia, the company said. Additionally, CVS Pharmacy locations in 46 states, including Virginia, stock the opioid overdose-reversal drug naloxone.

“Harm reduction is the key pillar in addiction treatment and, with this movement, CVS Health is showing that they truly understand it,” Breslin, an addiction medicine specialist in Richmond, said. “CVS Health understands the seriousness of the opioid epidemic and is taking clear measures to prevent our kids from getting addicted, or even worse, falling victim to an accidental overdose in the home.”

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