Port Angeles drug return program celebrates first anniversary
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Olympic Medical Cancer Center pharmacist Jon Bernhoft, Amanda Dickinson, pharmacy technician with Frick Drug, Joe Cammack of Jim's Pharmacy and Dave Hull, evidence manager with the Clallam County Sheriff's Office, from left, hold some of the boxes of pharmaceuticals and narcotics. -- Photo by Olympic Medical Center

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PORT ANGELES -- The free Clallam County Prescription Drug Return Program collected more than 90 boxes of unused prescription drugs during its first year of operation, the Sheriff's Office said.

The first anniversary of the program -- a pilot program in the state -- was last week.

The program was developed by Frick Drug in Sequim and Jim's Pharmacy in Port Angeles in cooperation with the state Board of Pharmacy and the Clallam County Sheriff's Office, said Jim Borte, Sheriff's Office spokesman, in a statement.

Under the program, residents can return unused narcotics and other potentially habit-forming medications to the Clallam County Sheriff's Office at 223 E. Fourth St., Port Angeles.

The drugs are accepted between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

All other prescription drugs can be returned to the pharmacies in Port Angeles and Sequim.

Jim's Pharmacy at 424 E. Second St., Port Angeles accepts the drugs between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Saturday, and between noon and 4 p.m. Sunday.

Frick Drug at 609 W. Washington St., Sequim accepts drugs between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. on Saturday and between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Sunday.

Drugs destroyed

Law enforcement personnel take the drugs to an Environmental Protection Agency-approved incinerator in Spokane where law enforcement officials destroy the drugs they seize on the street.

The program was set up to keep unwanted or unused prescriptions drugs out of medicine cabinets, off the streets and out of the groundwater.

It was developed by local pharmacy owners Cy Frick and Joe Cammack, Olympic Medical Center pharmacist Jon Bernhof and Clallam County Sheriff Bill Benedict.

It ran into a roadblock last fall when the Seattle office of the Drug Enforcement Administration stepped in and halted the program, which then had been developed to allow pharmacies to take narcotics.

Controlled prescription drugs defined as schedule II though V in the Controlled Substances Act could not be dropped off at the pharmacies, the DEA office said.

The program continued with a change -- that narcotics were to be taken to the Sheriff's Office instead of pharmacies.

Last modified: August 09. 2010 11:02PM
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