Prescription Drug Drop Boxes
Category: Law Enforcement
Gordon Graham here with Today’s Tip from Lexipol. And Today’s Tip deals with prescription drug drop boxes.
In the case of the prescription drug drops, since these drugs aren’t evidence requiring a “chain of custody” it isn’t unusual to have just one person responsible for their pickup and delivery for destruction.
Our thanks to retired Commander Jeff Hedrich from the Illinois State Police for suggesting this topic.
Across the country many law enforcement and fire service agencies have placed a prescription drug drop box in the lobby of their agencies. People are able to anonymously drop off unused prescription or over the counter drugs. Especially with the recent spike in prescription drug abuse, this is a tremendous service that removes the temptation from the home. It also protects the environment since the most common way to otherwise dispose of prescription drugs is to flush them down the toilet or pour them down the sink. The agencies then periodically turn over the drugs that have been dropped off to the DEA for safe disposal. Like I said, prescription drug drops are a great program.
The focus of Today’s Tip, though, isn’t on the drug drop programs themselves, but rather, how you manage them. If you’ve ever been to any of my live presentations then you know that I’m a huge fan of putting preventative measures in place BEFORE something bad happens. In the case of the prescription drug drops, since these drugs aren’t evidence requiring a “chain of custody” it isn’t unusual to have just one person responsible for their pickup and delivery for destruction. We’d like to think that there’s no chance that one of our personnel might be a prescription drug abuser or see the drugs as a means to make a few extra bucks on the side by selling them on the street. But I’ve read accounts of public safety personnel losing their careers for stealing drugs from the drop boxes. Here’s a thought for you, how about putting some checks and balances in place to remove that possibility and temptation. It would make sense to require two people to witness and confirm the inventory of the contents of the locked drop box and have them both sign off on it prior to shipping them off to DEA. Predictable is preventable.
And that is Today’s Tip from Lexipol. Gordon Graham signing off.