Medical waste bin collects over 200 pounds of debris

By Ed Harris

The medication drop box at the Southington Police Department is exceeding the expectations of organizers.
Since Oct. 11, the Southington Police has been the home to the permanent medication drop box. Since the box opened, officials have collected approximately 200 pounds of medication related items.
“It’s better than we thought it’d be,” said STEPS Coordinator Kelly Leppard. “The police are doing a great job.”
The Southington Town Wide Effort to Promote Success (STEPS), along with the Wheeler Clinic of Plainville collaborated on the project. STEPS was concerned about the amount of prescription drug use amongst Southington teens.
However, with the success there have been some problems with this box.  As it is emptied police officials have found needles; IVs, powders and other unacceptable items in the box.
“We’ve gotten a couple hundred pounds (of medical items),” said Sgt. Jeff Dobratz. “We just ask that people mind the rules.”
Below is a reminder of the acceptable and unacceptable items, along with the instructions for use.
Accepted items: prescription medications, over-the-counter meds, medication samples, medication for pets, liquid medication in glass or sealed containers, medicated ointments and lotions and inhalers
Items not accepted: personal care products, vitamins, needles, thermometers, IV bags/empty containers, bloody/iInfectious waste, hydrogen containers, aerosol cans and narcotics.
INSTRUCTIONS FOR USE: Gather unwanted medications at home (see above list for accepted & unaccepted items).
Place all pills in a plastic Ziplock type plastic bag. Recycle empty pill bottles at home; do not drop them in the box. Leave liquid medication in original container and secure in a leak proof plastic bag.
Deposit bagged medications in the bin.

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