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Utah County HCA hospitals to help crush the opioid crisis with take back day Saturday

By Genelle Pugmire - | Oct 20, 2021

GRANT HINDSLEY, Daily Herald

Flags fly at Timpanogos Regional Hospital on June 5, 2014. (Grant Hindsley, Daily Herald file photo)

Residents across the country are being asked to “Crush the Crisis” and be aware of local opioid take back days.

Utah County HCA hospitals will be participating in the national event this Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Both Timpanogos Regional Hospital in Orem and Mountain View Hospital in Payson are participating.

“It’s all in an effort to raise awareness about the dangers of opioid misuse and proper disposal of medications,” said Brittany Glas, the director of media relations. “Community members are invited to safely and anonymously dispose of unused or expired prescription medications.”

The event, which aligns with the Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, will take place at these locations:

Payson Market

586 North Main St,

The collection site includes a convenient drive thru, medication drop-off option. Follow event signs to the drive thru medication drop-off location.

Timpanogos Regional Hospital

750 West 800 North, Orem

The collection site which includes a convenient drive thru, medication drop-off option will be located near the main entrance of Timpanogos Regional Hospital. Follow event signs to the drive thru medication drop-off location.

The focus of the event is to collect tablets, capsules and patches of:

  • Hydrocodone (Norco, Lortab, Vicodin)
  • Oxycodone (Oxycontin, Percocet)
  • Tramadol (Ultram)
  • Codeine
  • Fentanyl (Duragesic)
  • Morphine
  • Hydromorphone (Dilaudid)
  • Oxymorphone (Opana)

However, any medications are accepted.

Items that will not be accepted include:

  • Needles
  • Syringes
  • Lancets
  • Inhalers
  • Liquids

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, the nation’s opioid epidemic has not slowed. Opioid misuse is a public health crisis in the United States and according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the number of drug overdose deaths increased by nearly 5% from 2018 to 2019 and has quadrupled since 1999. More than 70% of the 70,630 deaths in 2019 involved an opioid. According to the 2019 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 9.7 million people misused prescription pain relievers, 4.9 million people misused prescription stimulants and 5.9 million misused prescription tranquilizers or sedatives in 2019.

The survey also showed that a majority of misused prescription drugs were obtained from family and friends, often from the home medicine cabinet.

HCA Healthcare facilities across the nation will partner with local law enforcement agencies to raise awareness about opioid addiction and to collect unused and expired prescription medications for proper disposal. This year, HCA Healthcare events will align with National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, sponsored by the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

Hospital staff, volunteers and uniformed law enforcement officers will be present at each collection site to help with the safe and anonymous disposal of your unwanted medications.

To help keep members of the participating community safe, Crush the Crisis Opioid Take Back Day events will adhere to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention safety protocols to help reduce the spread of COVID-19, including, but not limited to:

  • Universal masking policy
  • Appropriate, disposable masks available to all participants and attendees
  • Hand sanitizer available
  • Social distancing, at least 6 feet from others and not gathering in groups
  • Appropriate traffic patterns to collection site (one entry path and one exit path)
  • Food and drinks not allowed

For more information about Crush the Crisis Opioid Take Back Day, call (833) 582-1970.

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