Skip Navigation

Image of the Baltimore County Historic Courthouse

Baltimore County News

Stay informed of what's happening in Baltimore County.
Keyword: opioid

Drug Drop Boxes are Conveniently Located in all Baltimore County Police Precincts

You know how important it is to read the label on your prescription medication and to take it only as directed. But are you also aware of how important it is to properly dispose of medications that you are no longer using? Unused prescription drugs can find their way into the wrong hands – with dangerous and oftentimes tragic consequences.

To help bring attention to this crucial public safety and public health issue, the Baltimore County Department of Health is promoting the national Prescription Drug Take Back Day (Saturday, April 28, 2018) and are reminding county residents that there are Drug Drop Box Locations in police precincts throughout Baltimore County. While the national observance will occur on April 28, Baltimore residents are able to place their expired and unused prescriptions in drug drop boxes throughout the county year round - 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

According to the 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 6.4 million Americans abused controlled prescription drugs – the majority of which were obtained directly from family and friends or by having access to the home medicine cabinets of family and friends. National Prescription Drug Take Back Day is a safe, convenient and responsible way to clean out your medicine cabinets and dispose of unused or expired prescription drugs and perhaps help prevent drug addiction and potential overdose deaths.

In addition to taking your unused medications to a drug drop box location, you may also dispose of them at home if no specific disposal instructions are given on the prescription drug labeling. Follow these simple steps:

  1. Remove the medicine from its original container and mix it with an undesirable substance, such as used coffee grounds or used kitty litter.
  2. Place the mixture in a sealable bag or container to prevent medicine from leaking out.
  3. Place the sealed bag or container in with your household trash.

Don’t forget to scratch out all identifying information on the prescription drug container to make it unreadable. This will help to protect your identity and maintain the privacy of your personal health information. 

By Gregory Wm. Branch, M.D. 
Director of Health and Human Services


County to Retain Nationally Recognized Law Firm to Pursue Action in Federal Court 

Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz announced today that Baltimore County intends to file a federal lawsuit against several pharmaceutical manufacturers and distributors of opioids, seeking monetary damages incurred by the County. “The opioid crisis has led to a significant increase of overdoses from heroin and prescription drug abuse," said Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz. “We believe that the pharmaceutical industry pressured and cajoled physicians into prescribing opioids for chronic pain, and vastly misrepresented the risk of addiction. The desire to increase profits on the part of drug companies is a leading cause of our nation’s health crisis, and we must fight back.”

In the first six months of 2017, Baltimore County had 187 substance-related deaths. The County has incurred expenses relating to first-responder intervention, drug and alcohol counseling programs, employee prescription expense, and loss of economic revenue to the County, among other costs. 

The County expects to file its case in the federal District Court, and seek consolidation for trial with other similar cases. It is entered into a contingent fee retainer agreement with the law firm Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd, LLP, subject to approval by the County Council. Robbins Geller maintains a national practice with substantial experience in whistleblower, antitrust, consumer and insurance class actions. The firm currently represents cities and counties in Michigan, Florida and Arizona in the opioid litigation. The Maryland-based law firm of Silverman, Thompson, Slutkin & White LLC would also serve as local counsel. 


Attend a free training in Baltimore County

The Baltimore County Department of Health is offering a free, two-hour training on how to recognize, prevent and respond to an opioid overdose by using intra-nasal Naloxone, a prescription medication that is used to reverse an overdose. Training is scheduled for the following dates in 2017:

Wednesday, January 25*, from 6 to 8 p.m.
Drumcastle Government Center, Third Floor
6401 York Road
Baltimore, Maryland 21212

Wednesday, February 15*, from 6 to 8 p.m.
Pikesville Library
1301 Reisterstown Road
Pikesville, Maryland 21208

Tuesday, March 14, from 6 to 8 p.m.
First Baptist Church of Essex
911 Mace Avenue
Essex, Maryland 21221

Tuesday, April 4, from 6 to 8 p.m.
Hiss United Methodist Church
8700 Harford Road
Parkville, Maryland 21234

Tuesday, May 9, from 6 to 8 p.m.
Arbutus Library
855 Sulphur Spring Road
Arbutus, Maryland 21227

Wednesday, June 7, from 6 to 8 p.m.
Sollers Point Multi-Purpose Center
323 Sollers Point Road
Dundalk, Maryland 21212

*These training will be cancelled if Baltimore County Government closes due to inclement weather.

The training is aimed to reach those who are concerned about loved ones or friends who may be at risk for overdosing on heroin or prescription pain medication. In addition to learning about opioids, participants will be taught how to recognize, respond to and prevent an opioid overdose.

The session will teach registrants how to administer intra-nasal naloxone to reverse an overdose. Participants will receive a certificate of completion, prescription for naloxone that can be filled on site, and a kit containing information and other materials.

Pre-registration is required and seating is limited. Register online at www.baltimorecountymd.gov/odresponse  or call 410-887-3828.


 
 
Revised September 11, 2017