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Geisinger becomes the first member of Risant Health


DANVILLE, PA -- Geisinger Health System recently received a grant from the Williamsport Lycoming Community Fund at the First Community Foundation Partnership of Pennsylvania to expand its medication take-back program in Lycoming County. With the one year grant of $29,255, Geisinger plans to install medication take-back boxes at six Weis Markets pharmacies, Ben Franklin Pharmacy in Muncy, and two yet-to-be determined locations.

The goal of the Geisinger medication take-back program is twofold: to decrease the abuse and unintentional overdose of prescription drugs by children and teenagers, and to decrease the potential negative impacts of medications on our environment. The new medication take-back boxes will allow community members to return unused or expired prescriptions, including narcotics, for safe and eco-friendly disposal.

“According to a recent survey by the Pennsylvania Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs, 14 percent of Pennsylvania youth admitted to taking prescription drugs that were not prescribed to them,” said Eric Wright, PharmD, MPH, senior investigator and co-director of the Center for Pharmacy Innovations and Outcomes, Geisinger Health System. “What’s even more alarming is that 18 percent of these kids felt the prescription drugs were not harmful, yet prescription drugs now result in more deaths than all illegal street drugs combined. We need to curb that trend, and the medication take-back boxes, when utilized, will help us do that.”

Over the past few years, Geisinger has convened a medication take-back team comprised of representatives from state and local government agencies, universities and the Hospital Association of Pennsylvania. The team plans to expand the program to other areas of central and northeast Pennsylvania through additional community grants and partnerships.

Medication take-back boxes are currently available at the Bush Pavilion and Knapper Clinic Pharmacies at Geisinger Medical Center in Danville, and CareSite Pharmacy in Dallas.
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