Tag Archives: Drug Take Back Act

State Legislature Passes Drug Take Back Act

New York State Senator Kemp Hannon joined with elected officials and stakeholders to announce enactment of (S9100) the Drug Take Back Act into law. This new law creates a unified, statewide drug take back program that will provide significantly more opportunities to safely dispose of unused medications by requiring all chain pharmacies to offer collection, thus reducing medication misuse and preventing drugs from being improperly disposed of into the environment. The program holds pharmaceutical companies responsible for the cost of proper drug disposal, thereby saving government and taxpayer’s money.

 

Senator Hannon, Chair of the Senate’s Health Committee, stated, “I am proud that by enacting this law, New York will be a national leader in providing consumers with free and convenient drug take back options paid for by manufacturers. This initiative will improve both the environmental health and the physical health of all New York citizens.”

 

Assemblywoman Gunther stated, “Studies show that between 60-70% of teenagers who abuse prescription drugs get them from their parents’ medicine cabinets. The opioid crisis is crushing our communities and this is another tool in fighting this terrible epidemic. We’ve made tremendous strides in recent years to expand the options consumers have to take back their unused medications, but this is by far the biggest step. This bill gives customers a take-back option at every single chain pharmacy in the state, and it does so without any cost to the consumer.”

 

Excess medications sitting in cabinets are ripe for abuse, and one of the most common ways people become addicted and addicts feed their habits. Communities, law enforcement, elected officials and pharmacies holding special take back days is just not enough. Over the last 14 annual drug take back events, over 4,508 tons of unused prescription drugs have been collected. However, unused medications are still getting into the wrong hands and having a devastating effect. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports, every 16 minutes one U.S. citizen dies from a drug overdose. This program will increase the impact by ensuring drug take back is conveniently available every day. Although the pilot Pharmaceutical Take Back Program, which launched in December 2017, distributed 87 collection boxes to ensure easier disposal of unused medication, this new law will expand locations of disposal to over 2,000 locations.

 

Dr. Jeffrey Reynolds, President and CEO of Family and Children’s Association, stated, “Given that most people get their first taste of opioids from medications left in the family medicine cabinet, the proper removal and disposal of leftover medications is absolutely critical to our efforts to adequately address the opioid crisis. Long Island has been hit and we thank Senator Hannon for his multi-faceted and tireless efforts to address the epidemic in Nassau/Suffolk and statewide.”

 

Patrick J. Ryder, Nassau County Police Commissioner, stated, “The passage of Senator Hannon’s legislation on the Drug Take Back Act is a common sense approach to protecting not only our residents, but children who may come in contact with these dangerous and lethal medications. Whether it be accidental or voluntary exposure, all of us have to work together to ensure that every last pill that is not being used is accounted for and not lying around in a medicine cabinet or inappropriately discarded with the possibility of inflicting harm to any one of us. We have seen all too often how these medications come into the wrong hands and leave us with devastating results.”

 

Ed Campbell, Region Director of CVS Health, stated, “CVS Health is dedicated to helping the communities we serve address and prevent opioid abuse, which is why we’ve expanded access to safe medication disposal to 50 CVS Pharmacy locations across New York State and 750 locations across the U.S. We deeply appreciate Senator Hannon’s leadership in recognizing the importance of increasing access to sites where people can safely dispose of unwanted medication and look forward to working with him as this law is implemented.”

 

Proper disposal of drugs will also protect the state’s water supplies. Improper disposal by means of flushing not only results in contamination of water bodies but also negatively impacts aquatic life. A U.S. Geological Survey conducted in 1999 and 2000 found 80 percent of rivers and streams tested to have traces of antibiotics, hormones and steroids in them. Last year, the Senate led the way by securing a historic investment of $2.5 billion to improve and protect our water resources. Keeping drugs out of our water supplies is another important and necessary step.

 

Paul Stauder, President of Covanta Environmental Solutions, stated, “We are proud to provide the safe and environmentally sound disposal of unwanted medications at our Energy-from-Waste facilities. Preventing the potential abuse of these drugs is of utmost importance, but also making sure our environment and water isn’t negatively impacted from improper disposal is essential as well. We commend New York State and Senator Hannon for making this important issue a priority.”

 

Adrienne Esposito, Executive Director of Citizens Campaign for the Environment, stated, “The Drug Take Back Act is a game changer for New York residents. In numerous homes throughout New York, there lurks unwanted prescription drugs that pose a danger to our children and our environment. Safe and convenient access to safe disposal options has become a necessity in today’s society. The King Kullen pharmacy program has collected 9,800 pounds of unwanted drugs in the last 3 years, and this law will make similar take-back options available to all New Yorkers. We are extremely grateful for Senator Kemp Hannon’s leadership and determination to address this issue. This law establishes one of the strongest safe disposal programs in the nation.”

 

This legislation will take effect January 6, 2019.

 

Visit Senator Hannon’s webpage

Senator Phillips Announces ‘Drug Take Back Act’ Signed Into State Law

Senator Elaine Phillips announced that the “Drug Take Back Act,” which she co-sponsored, was signed into state law. The measure establishes a unified statewide drug take-back program that will reduce medication misuse, and save government and taxpayer money. The bill will also protect the state’s water supplies by preventing drugs from being improperly disposed of by flushing or other means that result in contamination of water bodies and negatively impact aquatic life.

 

“Families on Long Island, and across New York State, are struggling with the devastation and heartbreak caused by our heroin and opioid crisis,” Senator Phillips said. “This measure not only helps prevent dangerous prescription medications from being abused, but provides another tool in the collaborative fight to end this epidemic. Increasing proper disposal methods will also protect our environment by curbing the amount of medication flushed into our sole-source of drinking water. I am proud to be a co-sponsor and am pleased the measure is now state law.”

 

Senator Phillips has hosted numerous “Shed the Meds” programs throughout the 7th Senate District and has collected and properly disposed of over 800 pounds of unwanted drugs.

 

Last year, Governor Cuomo vetoed a bill S.6750 that would have helped expand existing drug take-back efforts, stop more opioids from getting into the hands of abusers, and prevent the contamination of the environment. In response, the Senate Majority successfully led the effort this year to create a unified, statewide drug take-back program that saves taxpayers the money spent on programs currently operated by law enforcement agencies and public officials, and helps reduce medication misuse and improper disposal.

 

The Drug Take Back Act will help give manufacturers of pharmaceutical products responsibility for costs of the take-back program, with focal points being public education and awareness, as well as drug collection, transport, and destruction. Under this new law, chain and mail-order pharmacies will be required to provide consumers with collection options, including drop boxes and prepaid mail-back envelopes. The measure will also ensure rural, urban, and other underserved communities have access to ongoing collection services so that all persons have reasonable access to locations to dispose of their drugs and prevent over-saturation in higher populated areas.

 

The new law is critical to the state’s ongoing efforts to reduce drug abuse because one of the most common ways for opioid addictions to start is when individuals have access to leftover prescriptions, whether it be theirs, a friend’s, a relative’s, or someone else’s. By increasing New Yorkers’ opportunities to properly dispose of unused drugs, the potential for abuse and addiction is decreased. In addition, proper disposal helps protect the state’s water supplies because fewer people would improperly dispose of drugs by flushing them down a toilet or using other means that result in water contamination. Last year, the Senate led the way in securing a historic $2.5 billion investment to improve and protect water resources, and keeping drugs out of water supplies is another important and necessary step.

 

Visit Senator Phillips’ webpage

Senator Phillips Announces Passage of New York Senate’s ‘Drug Take Back Act’

Bill Creates a New Statewide Pharmaceutical Take-Back Program to Hold Pharmaceutical Companies – Not Taxpayers – Accountable for Proper Drug Disposal

 

Senator Elaine Phillips announced that the New York State Senate passed the “Drug Take Back Act,” which she co-sponsored, that helps prevent opioids or other unused prescriptions from being abused and protects water supplies from improper disposal.

 

“Families on Long Island, and across New York State, are struggling with the devastation and heartbreak caused by our heroin and opioid crisis,” Senator Phillips said. “This measure not only helps prevent dangerous prescription medications from being abused, but provides another tool in the collaborative fight to end this epidemic. Increasing proper disposal methods will also protect our environment by curbing the amount of medication flushed into our sole-source of drinking water. I am proud to be a co-sponsor and I applaud my colleagues for passing this measure.”

 

The bill, S7354, would provide significantly more opportunities for New Yorkers to ensure the safe disposal of unused drugs by establishing a new statewide pharmaceutical drug take-back program.

 

Last year, Governor Cuomo vetoed a bill (S6750) that would have helped expand existing drug take-back efforts, stop more opioids from getting into the hands of abusers, and prevent the contamination of the environment. This new bill was introduced to create a unified, statewide drug take-back program that saves taxpayer money spent on programs currently operated by law enforcement agencies and public officials and helps reduce medication misuse and improper disposal.

 

The Drug Take Back Act holds pharmaceutical manufacturers responsible for all costs of the take-back program, ranging from public education and awareness to drug collection, transport, and destruction. The Act further requires chain pharmacies and mail-order pharmacies to provide consumers with collection options including drop boxes and prepaid mail-back envelopes.

 

Opioid addictions are known to start when individuals access leftover prescriptions found at home in medicine cabinets. By giving New Yorkers more opportunities to find ways to properly dispose of unused drugs, the potential for abuse and addiction is decreased. In addition, proper disposal helps protect the state’s water supplies because fewer people would improperly dispose of drugs by flushing them down a toilet or using other means that result in water contamination and negative impacts to aquatic life. Last year, New York made a historic $2.5 billion investment in improving and protecting water resources, and keeping drugs out of water supplies is another important and necessary step. This measure was also included in the Senate’s one-house budget proposal passed earlier this year.

 

The Senate today passed another bill, S6673, which Senator Phillips co-sponsored, that requires the state Departments of Health and Environmental Conservation to create, maintain, and regularly update a statewide web-based listing of prescription drug disposal sites, events, and other disposal options for consumers. The site would be searchable by zip code so New Yorkers can find a site closest to them when they need to get rid of prescriptions or other drugs in their homes.

 

“Creating a searchable database for disposal sites and events ensures New Yorkers have the resources to dispose of unused medications,” Senator Phillips said. “The option to properly dispose of drugs should be readily available to all New Yorkers – and this measure does just that.”

 

The bills were sent to the Assembly.

 

Visit Senator Phillips’ webpage

 

Senator Phillips Co-Sponsors Bill to Establish Statewide Drug Takeback Program

Senator Elaine Phillips recently announced that she is co-sponsoring legislation that will establish a statewide take-back program for the safe disposal of drugs.

 

“Pharmaceutical companies are making big profits off products that potentially impact our state two-fold, first by adding to our state’s growing drug and heroin epidemic and secondly, threatening our already fragile water supply,” Senator Elaine Phillips said. “I am proud to sponsor this measure that will hold companies accountable in preventing misuse of the products they produce.”

 

The bill (S.7354), also known as the Drug Take Back Act, would establish an industry-funded, statewide pharmaceutical drug take-back program.

 

“Countless families continue to be destroyed with the growing opioid epidemic,” Senator Phillips said. “It has been well documented that the first supply of opioids is often leftover medication a family member did not use. To cut off the supply, we must provide the option of a take-back program making the disposal of these drugs more prominent and accessible.”

 

This measure will also help protect Long Island’s fragile water supplies by preventing people from disposing of drugs down drains and directly into valuable water sources.

 

Senator Phillips also reminded residents they do not need to wait for legislation to pass to be pro-active about safely disposing of unused medications.

 

Many local police precincts have secure drop boxes where you can safely dispose of old medications. The Nassau County Police stations in Williston Park, Manhasset and Elmont each have disposal boxes where you can drop off medications 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Village police departments in Port Washington, Old Westbury and Floral Park also collect unwanted drugs for safe disposal.

 

Starting in April, Senator Phillips also announced to residents that the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) will be instituting a temporary $2 million Pilot Pharmaceutical Take-Back Program. Under the program, DEC will purchase medication collection boxes and pay for the disposal of waste pharmaceuticals collected by participating facilities for a two-year period.

 

For more information on the program, including drop office locations planned near you, visit www.dec.ny.gov/chemical/67720.html.

 

Senator Phillips also plans to continue hosting her “Shed the Meds” events later this year. Last April, in partnership in partnership with the Manhasset Community Coalition Against Substance Abuse (CASA) and the Nassau County Police Department, over 200 residents came to her “Shed the Meds” event and safely disposed of thousands of pain pills, antibiotics and other types of medications, all of which were taken by the police for safe disposal.

 

Visit Senator Phillips’ webpage

Senators Hannon, O’Mara Introduce ‘Drug Take Back Act’ to Prevent Opioid Abuse, Protect Water Supplies

New Measure Holds Drug Manufacturers Responsible for the Proper Disposal and Collection of Their Products

 

Senator Kemp Hannon (R-Nassau) and Senator Tom O’Mara (R,C,I-Big Flats) today announced the introduction of legislation to enact the “Drug Take Back Act”. The measure (S7354) helps combat the abuse of prescription drugs and prevents unused drugs from contaminating water supplies by establishing a statewide pharmaceutical drug take back program for their safe disposal.

 

Senator Kemp Hannon, Chair of the Senate Health Committee, “New York, like the rest of the nation, continues to struggle with the opioid addiction crisis. Despite our best efforts to stem the tide of opioid related deaths, the number of deaths continue to rise. Due to the fact that some drug addictions are first supplied by leftover medication a family member or friend did not use, cutting off that supply is essential.”

 

Senator O’Mara, Chair of the Senate Environmental Conservation Committee, said, “It’s incredibly important to do anything and everything we can to complement and support the efforts of local law enforcement and other community leaders to combat prescription drug abuse. These efforts include National Prescription Drug Take Back Days and other initiatives like this one to facilitate the collection, and safe and responsible disposal of unused medications. This proposal to greatly expand the number of permanent, locally based drop-off locations would be a very positive, cost-effective addition to the state’s ongoing, overall strategy to protect our communities and local environments.”

 

The legislation would create a unified, statewide drug take back program that will save government and taxpayer money and reduce medication misuse. In addition, the program would protect New York State’s water supplies by preventing drugs from being improperly disposed of by flushing or other means that result in contamination of water bodies and negatively impact aquatic life. Last year, New York made a historic investment in improving and protecting our water and keeping drugs out of water supplies is another important and necessary step.

 

The bill makes pharmaceutical manufacturers responsible for all costs of the take back program, ranging from public education and awareness to collection, transport, and destruction. The Act further requires chain pharmacies and mail-order pharmacies to provide consumers with on-site collection, prepaid mail-back envelopes, or other DEA-approved methods to encourage safe drug disposal.

 

“This legislation will hold manufacturers rather than consumers financially responsible for safely managing the disposal of their products,” stated Senator Hannon. “With chain pharmacies providing for collection, we will be able to reach more consumers, ensuring a successful program.”

 

The legislation is currently on the agenda for this week’s scheduled Senate Health Committee meeting.

 

Visit Legislator Hannon’s webpage