Prescription medication drop box helping to reduce threat



Unused prescription medication can be a danger. It often sits in the cabinet, sometimes for years. These idle medicine bottles may go unnoticed by many, but pose a real threat for accidental overdose, misuse, and abuse.

Many times medication is not disposed of properly and that simply adds to the danger for others. Alethia House prevention specialist Ashley Scoggins said, “Unused medication makes the temptation for others to use much easier when it is conveniently located in the house. By disposing of unused medication properly, the ease and temptation is greatly reduced.”

In an effort to prevent such accidental overdoses, take away the temptation, and offer a convenient way to dispose of unused medications, Oneonta Fire and Rescue and Oneonta Police Department have partnered together to help make the community a safe and better place. The efforts to help the community were made available due to a grant through CVS.

Located in front of Oneonta Fire Department, a prescription medication drop off receptacle (above) is now available for the public to safely dispose of unused prescription medication. The receptacle is available 24 hours a day and is emptied at random times.

Stipulations in the grant state that the receptacle must be located near a 24-hour manned facility. Because Oneonta Police Department is open 24/7, that requirement allows the drop box to be situated next door at the fire station. Also, with the receptacle being located on the fire department property, it allows people to drop off the medication anonymously with no paperwork required.

In just the first nine days, more than 250 grams of unused medications were recovered. Oneonta Fire Chief Kenneth Booth said, “The Oneonta Fire and Rescue Service is proud to partner with the Oneonta Police Department and CVS to provide this unused prescription medication collection service for our community.

“This collection box is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and is in a safe, well-lit location in front of our fire station at 308 Second Street North to make disposal of unused medication safe and convenient. Proper disposal of unused medication helps reduce the chances of accidental ingestion and also reduces opportunities for misuse and abuse.”

To find out more information about programs and activities, contact Ledbetter at 205-274-2752, by email at, or by following Oneonta Fire and Rescue on Facebook.