College Celebrates Largest Medication Collection Event to Date
The University of Michigan College of Pharmacy hosted its 9th Safe Medication Disposal Event on Tuesday, April 3. Students operated two collection locations simultaneously, one on Ingalls Mall and a second at Michigan Medicine.
The event was a collaboration between Phi Delta Chi, the American Pharmacists Association Academy of Student Pharmacists (APhA-ASP), and the University of Michigan Police Department, with sponsorship from Advanced Care Pharmacy Services. A record 472 pounds non-controlled and 50 pounds controlled medication were safely disposed of through incineration during the event.
“This medication disposal service we provide as students allows us to make an impact on the community, particularly during the opioid epidemic. Every pill we take back is one less that someone can abuse,” said Taylor Coe, P2, event co-organizer. “Not only do we get to provide this service to the Ann Arbor community, but we have the opportunity to advocate for our profession and demonstrate the impact pharmacists have in healthcare,” added Paul Ko, P2, event co-organizer.
Each Safe Medication Disposal Event has had considerable participation. Since the event's inception in March 2014, students have collected almost 3,000 pounds of medication that are no longer in homes, landfills, or the water supply.
The event is primarily organized and run by student volunteers. The College would like to thank Sgt. Hicks and Sgt. Butzky, police officers from the University of Michigan Police Department, for their continued support of this event. Washtenaw County Water Resources Commissioner’s Office and Drug & Laboratory Disposal, Inc. helped with the disposal of the collected medications. Thank you to Dean Nancy Mason and Dr. Peggy Carver for precepting students at each location, and to Carol Purcell, Diversion Prevention Manager with Michigan Medicine, who and helped with the logistics of organizing the Michigan Medicine location. Student volunteers collected and sorted medication, as well as educated the public on safe medication handling procedures.
The College hosts two medication disposal events each year on the first Tuesday of April and October. Check the College of Pharmacy events page for information on future medication disposal events.
For information on medication disposal resources available all year round, visit www.dontflushdrugs.com