SAFE Project Kicks Off Fundraising to Fight Opioid Crisis Through At-Home Medication Disposal
The Gone for Good™ at-home drug disposal campaign aims to safely dispose of 1.8 million unused prescription and over-the-counter medications this April to address the rising opioid crisis amidst the pandemic
WASHINGTON D.C. – Feb. 4, 2021 – With the continued rise of COVID-19, overdose deaths across the country have exponentially spiked across the United States. The CDC recently reported 81,230 Americans died between May 2019 and May 2020, the highest number of drug deaths ever recorded in a 12-month span, with opioids playing a major role.
What many people don’t realize? The United States’ high rate of opioid misuse often starts in the home medicine cabinet. According to Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) 567,000 children ages 12-17 misused opioids in 2019 and Research shows that nearly 80% of heroin users first started abusing prescription drugs, often from a friend or family member. And it’s no wonder because prescriptions are readily available in most of our homes; more than 60% of people with leftover opioid prescriptions chose to keep the drugs rather than dispose of them safely.
The answer: National nonprofit SAFE Project is determined to change these statistics by focusing its efforts on encouraging communities to clean out their home medicine cabinets.
SAFE Project recently launched fundraising efforts for the third Gone for Good at-home medication disposal campaign, which aims to raise $110,000 to safely dispose of 1.8 million dosage units of medication through the distribution of 20,000 free at-home Deterra Pouches distributed across the country in April 2021.
Deterra’s pouch allows users to safely deactivate and permanently destroy prescription and over-the-counter medicine using activated carbon. In 2020, the inaugural year of Gone for Good, the campaign distributed 25,000 free Deterra pouches to 48 states during April and October, enough to dispose of nearly 2.25 million unused drugs.
“This is a public safety issue, and when unused medications aren’t disposed of properly, they put families at risk,” said Admiral James Winnefeld, co-founder of SAFE Project. “Through projects like Gone for Good, every day can be Drug Take Back Day to make our communities safer.”
“During the COVID-19 pandemic, we’ve seen increases in opioid abuse and overdoses across the country as Americans are dealing with stress and isolation,” said Jason Sundby, chairman and CEO of Verde Environmental Technologies, Inc., maker of the Deterra Drug Deactivation System. “One in three Americans have unused prescriptions in their home and since abuse often starts with our own medicine cabinets, effective and permanent at-home drug disposal methods like Deterra are more important than ever right now.”
For more information on Gone for Good, visit DeterraSystem.com/SAFE.
About Deterra and Verde Environmental Technologies, Inc.
Minneapolis-based Verde Environmental Technologies, Inc., is a privately owned company committed to developing research-based scientifically proven solutions to reduce drug abuse, misuse and negative environmental impact. The patented Deterra® Drug Deactivation System is powered by proprietary Molecular Adsorption Technology, which deactivates drugs using activated carbon. Deterra is highly effective in adsorbing and firmly binding drugs, rendering them inert, unavailable for misuse and safe for the environment.