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Partnership leads to healthy initiative

Local residents and community leaders gather for a photo during the opening of a second medication drop box at the
Johnson County Community Hospital in Mountain City. The effort to properly dispose of out-of-date, unused or unwanted medications is a partnership between A.C.T.I.O.N. Coalition and Ballad Health Foundation. Submitted photo.

Submitted by
Trish Burchette

MOUNTAIN CITY, Tenn. – The A.C.T.I.O.N. Coalition – in conjunction with Ballad Health Foundation – has installed a second medication drop box for residents to safely dispose of unwanted, out-of-date and unused medications.
The new medication drop box has been installed at Johnson County Community Hospital in hopes that the community will feel comfortable with disposing of out-of-date, unused or unwanted medications, no questions asked.
“A.C.T.I.O.N Coalition is very excited to be able to partner with Ballad Health Foundation to offer another avenue for preventing misuse of medications,” said Trish Burchette, executive director of A.C.T.I.O.N. Coalition. “We appreciate all the support our community and our coalition receive from Ballad Health on this and our many other projects as we work together to envision a community free of substance misuse.”
Unlocked medications can be a potential hazard for young children who can accidentally gain access them. Also, these medications can be stolen and possibly resold in the community, which poses an additional hazard. The drop box will remain locked at all times and is only emptied by deputies with the Johnson County Sheriff’s Department. Medications are then disposed of properly at an off-site location.
The first drop box in the community was placed at the Johnson County Sheriff’s Department in 2016 and is still in use.
“We are pleased to have the opportunity to collaborate with A.C.T.I.O.N. Coalition to furnish the funds
needed for a secured drop box for unwanted, out-of-
date and unused medications,” said Karen Clark, corporate director of fund development for Ballad Health Foundation.
A.C.T.I.O.N (Alliance of Citizens Together Improving Our Neighborhoods) Coalition was established in 2006 as a non-profit organization funded in part by state and federal grant funding. One of the grants the coalition
received establishes guidelines to help fight the ongoing issue of opioid misuse and abuse. The installation of a new drop box is one of the initiatives supported by this grant.