Giant Food and Loudoun’s Department of Mental Health, Substance Abuse and Developmental Services are rolling out a new service aimed at curbing the misuse of opioid prescriptions.
Through the collaboration, the eight Giant stores in Loudoun will provide customers with a drug deactivation bag or medication lock box along with an informational flier on how to prevent medications from getting into the wrong hands.
According to the announcement, nearly 12,000 opioid prescriptions are filled every day in Virginia. Prescription opioids often go unused, unlocked and undisposed. Seventy-three to seventy-seven percent of patients reported that their prescription opioids were not stored in locked containers. Most people who misuse opioids get them from a friend, relative or single prescriber.
Medication lock boxes may be used to store opioids out of reach of children, other family members, pets and guests. Drug deactivation bags may be used to properly dispose of unused medications and reduce the impact on the environment.
When shopping at Giant, each pharmacy customer will receive a free drug deactivation bag or medication lock box while supplies last.
Loudoun’s MHSADS Prevention/Intervention Program received funding for the program through a State Opioid Response grant to support services that prevent opioid misuse.
“Programs like this demonstrate to the community that Giant Pharmacy, as well as their local government, really care about them. In addition to providing tangible tools that help keep people safe, Giant Pharmacy is aware of the positive impact we can make in people’s overall health and well-being,” stated Samir Balile, clinical pharmacy program manager at Giant Food.