There is a new statewide effort to prevent opioid addiction when an injured worker is prescribed the drugs as part of an Ohio Bureau of Worker's Compensation claim.

So what's being done to make sure opioid prescriptions don't fall into the wrong hands?

The Ohio Bureau of Worker's Compensation has experienced a 16-percent decline in the number of opioid prescriptions they've covered for injured workers in the past year.

Beginning November 1st, the State of Ohio will partner with the Bureau of Worker's Compensation and RecoveryOhio. The reason to make sure injured workers receive a free product that will render their prescribed opioids or other drugs useless when the medication is no longer needed.

Franklin Pharmacy in Warren says their customers frequently request the drug disposal kits.

Danielle Hubbard is a Franklin Pharmacy Pharmacist, "We have a lot of Worker's Comp patients, a lot of chronic pain patients, and that's a frequent question. I'm done with this medication, I've changed medications, what do I do wit this now?"

Newly injured workers don't always need every opioid pill in their prescription, and according to the Bureau of Worker's Comp, this new effort will safely dispose of drugs to keep them from being abused and getting into the wrong hands.

Nearly one-third of people aged 12 and over who used drugs for the first time began by using a prescription drug for recreational use, according to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health.

"A lot of people get started on drug abuse because they borrowed it from somebody's cabinet, a friend's medicine cabinet, a family member's medicine cabinet, because it's been sitting up there for weeks and months at a time," Hubbard said.

Franklin's Pharmacy in Warren is working with the State of Ohio and the BWC to offer the Deterra Drug Deactivation System. There are just a few simple steps. Open the package, pour the unwanted pills, liquid medication, or even patches into the bag, then add warm water.
Immediately you will see the mixture bubble up and turn in to a gel. Just reseal it and throw it in the trash.

By adding the warm water to the solution in the bag, as well as the medication, the potentially dangerous drugs have been automatically deactivated.

Preventing abuse and possibly saving lives.