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Article updated: 5/8/2013 11:56 AM

RxBOX can help prevent drug abuse among teens

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By Dave Hass

DUPAGE COUNTY--May 12-18 is National Prevention Week and the DuPage County Health Department and Prevention Leadership Team are encouraging County residents to deposit unwanted medications in RxBOX containers, which helps keep drugs out of the hands of young people.

High school students find it easy to obtain prescription medications, not in back alleys or gang-controlled street corners, but from their family's medicine cabinets or those of their friends.

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Medicines that stay in the home cabinets are highly susceptible to misuse and abuse. The simple act of cleaning out your medicine cabinet could prevent teenage substance abuse and most importantly, it could save a life. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, prescription drug abuse is the fastest-growing drug problem among 12- to 17-year-olds.

The Health Department and other community partners formed the DuPage County Prevention Leadership Team in 2011 to create a coordinated response to the rise in substance abuse among young people. The Prevention Leadership Team encourages youths to maintain wellness by avoiding alcohol, marijuana and other drugs. Besides the Health Department, the Prevention Leadership Team includes hospitals, schools, law enforcement and other community-based organizations.

Launched by the Health Department in 2009, the RxBOX program has collected more than 14 tons of medications, or 29,400 pounds. The materials are removed periodically from RxBOX locations and safely incinerated by a contractor provided by the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency using state-of-the-art technology.

Residents can drop off unwanted medications at any of the following RxBOX locations:

• Addison Police Department, 3 Friendship Plaza, Addison, IL 60101

• Bloomingdale Police Department, 2015 Bloomingdale Road, Bloomingdale, IL 60108

• Burr Ridge Police Department, 7660 S. County Line Rd # 1, Burr Ridge, IL 60527

• Carol Stream Police Department, 500 N. Gary Avenue, Carol Stream, IL 60188

• DuPage County Sheriff, 501 N. County Farm Road, Wheaton, IL 60187

• Glendale Heights Police Department, 300 Civic Plaza, Glendale Heights, IL 60139

• Lemont Police Department, 416 Main Street, Lemont, IL 60439

• Lisle Police Department, 5040 Lincoln Avenue, Lisle, IL 60532

• Oak Brook Police Department, 1200 Oak Brook Road, Oak Brook, IL 60521

• Schaumburg Police Department, 1000 W. Schaumburg Road, Schaumburg, IL 60194

• Wheaton Police Department. 900 W. Liberty Drive, Wheaton, IL 60187

• Wood Dale Police Department, 404 N. Wood Dale Road, Wood Dale, IL 60191

For more information on the DuPage County Health Department, follow us on Twitter @DuPageHD or become a fan on Facebook.

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