Combating drug overdoses is focus this week in Allegany and some adjoining counties

Two events in three Allegany County communities are scheduled this week in an effort to help block drug overdose deaths.

Houghton University has several seats remaining for a Wednesday afternoon Naloxone training to equip area residents in administering a free nasal spray which can be provided to counteract opioid drug overdoses, including those which occur inadvertently with children and the elderly.

This will be followed on Saturday, April 27, by individuals being able to drop off unused prescription drugs at sites in Andover and Wellsville as part of the biannual federal Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Prescription Drug Take Back Day, keeping substances out of the hands of misusers, children and public water supplies.

Naloxone training registration
Required registration for the Naloxone training, to be held from 2PM to 4PM, Wednesday, April 24, at the Nielsen Physical Education Center on Campground Road in Houghton, is available at https://tinyurl.com/Houghton-Naloxone-Training.

The session, sponsored by the state Office of Addiction Services and Supports, is being made available as a result of opioid settlement funds obtained as a result of major lawsuits against drug companies, with further information about the medicine and its availability at https://tinyurl.com/NYSDOH-Naloxone.

Narcan, one of the naloxone brand names, also can be administered by injections, which may be used by professionals.

Anyone can administer the medicine in event of someone experiencing an overdose incident but should be aware of sound procedures for doing so, which will be explained at the training. Authorities say there is no effect on an individual if naloxone is inaccurately administered due to an assumption of an overdose.

With a major increase in drug overdose deaths nationwide, the State Health Department has issued a standing order which enables pharmacies to provide the medicine without an individual prescription.

Many areas, including Steuben County, have created opioid and drug prevention committees which are installing wall boxes of the medicine in public spaces.

Prescription drug take back sites
The no-questions-asked pill drops will be conducted from 2PM to 4PM by Allegany County Sheriff’s deputies at both the Andover Fire Department at 60 Main Street, and the Wellsville Volunteer Fire Department at 40 South Main Street.

Individuals are encouraged to take part in this nationwide effort to keep unused prescription drugs out of the hands of unauthorized individuals who often pilfer them from home drawers and medicine chests, children who can swallow and overdose if they happen to discover them unattended, and public water supplies through flushing of unused medicines.

Individuals and organizations also can become advocates for this initiative by letting others know about the national searchable database for event locations throughout the United States at https://tinyurl.com/DEA-Take-Back-Locations.

Additional disposal locations
There also are take back sites in Wyoming and Cattaraugus counties which can be found on the searchable database No drop-off sites currently are listed in Steuben and Livingston counties, or neighboring Potter or McKean counties in Pennsylvania.

The Allegany County Sheriff’s Office NY is assisted by Partners for Prevention in Allegany County (Ppac Central) and the Allegany Council on Alcoholism and Substance Abuse in the local initiative.

Last spring, over 80 pounds of unused prescriptions were collected at collection sites in Friendship and Wellsville.

Year-around disposal
In addition to the Take Back Days, 12 Pill Drop Boxes are located in various parts of the county year-around, including:
– Alfred: Alfred Pharmacy, 36 North Main Street, and NYS University Police at Alfred State College, 10 Upper College Drive, in the Theta Gamma House.
– Andover: Jones Memorial Hospital Medical Practice, 20 Main Street.
– Belmont: Allegany County Sheriff’s Office NY, 4884 State Route 19-South, and Nicholson Pharmacy Gifts., 36 Schuyler Street (State Route 19)
– Bolivar: Jones Memorial Hospital Medical Practice, 120 1st Street
– Canaseraga: Tri-County Family Medicine, 12 North Church Street.
– Cuba: Cuba Police Department, 15 Water Street, and Cuba Pharmacy, 2 Center Street.
– Fillmore: Fillmore Pharmacy, 10560 State Route 19-South.
– Friendship: Friendship Pharmacy, 9 West Main Street.
– Wellsville: Jones Memorial Hospital, 191 North Main Street, Fisher’s Pharmacy, 138 North Main Street, and the Wellsville N.Y. Police Department, 46 South Main Street.

Sharps disposal
Allegany also is one of only two counties in the state for disposal of sharps needles at refuse disposal sites, with drop boxes for those items at the Alfred, Bellmont, Bolivar, Caneadea, Canaseraga, Cuba/Friendship, and Wellsville landfill transfer locations.

Used sharps should be placed in a sealable container, with the entire container dropped into the sharps drop box at the transfer station. They should not be placed in the community pill drop boxes.

An incomplete state Department of Environmental Conservation map of pill drop boxes in the state is available at https://tinyurl.com/NY-Take-Back-Locations. A similar map for Pennsylvania is available at https://tinyurl.com/PA-Take-Back-Locations.
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