Health Notes: St. Louis County reports success in drug-recovery effortMore than 200 pounds of medicines didn’t go down the drain or get into the wrong hands thanks to St. Louis County’s “Take it to the Box” program this summer.
By: Compiled by John Lundy, Duluth News Tribune
More than 200 pounds of medicines didn’t go down the drain or get into the wrong hands thanks to St. Louis County’s “Take it to the Box” program this summer.
Specifically, 209.8 pounds of pharmaceuticals were collected at the six drop boxes across the Iron Range from mid-May through mid-August, said a news release from the county’s environmental services department.
In all, 360 pounds have been collected since the program began earlier this year, with the help of a Minnesota Pollution Control Agency grant.
It’s similar to a program in Duluth, Hermantown and Proctor that’s coordinated by the Western Lake Superior Sanitary District.
Pouring medicines down the drain has been linked to adverse effects on fish and wildlife, the county said. Medication left unused in a cabinet can lead to accidental poisonings or contribute to prescription drug abuse.
The WLSSD boxes are available at the Duluth/St. Louis County Public Service Public Safety Building and at the police departments in Hermantown and Proctor.
The county boxes are at the sheriff’s offices in Virginia and Hibbing and police offices in Eveleth, Gilbert, Ely and Babbitt.
What you can put in the boxes: prescription and over-the-counter medications — including pills, capsules, blister packs, creams and gels, inhalers, IV bags, liquids, patches, powders, sprays and vials.
What you can’t: needles, syringes, lancets, thermometers and medications from businesses.
The unused medications are incinerated at a facility in Fosston, Minn.
More information regarding St. Louis County sites is at (218) 749-9703 or stlouiscountymn.gov. Regarding WLSSD sites, call (218) 722-0761 or go to wlssd.com.
And the winners are …
Awards for area health-care institutions:
The program was developed in 2006 to help patients find quality providers for specialty needs. Blue Cross and Blue Shield said that according to its research, Blue Distinction Centers demonstrate better quality and improved outcomes for patients with lower rates of complications for certain procedures and lower rates of infections.
Westwood is celebrating with “An evening of excellence” from 4-7 p.m. today at Westwood Senior Apartments in the Benedictine Health Center-St. Scholastica Monastery complex at 925 Kenwood Ave. Hors d’oeuvres and refreshments will be served.
RSVPs are appreciated but not required. Contact Lisa Miskulin at (218) 723-5931.
Teal landmarks and more
We told you last week about the Duluth landmarks — Enger Tower and the Aerial Lift Bridge — that will be lit in teal this weekend in recognition of Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month.
A number of activities will take place as well, said Kristine Greer, a Duluth native, cancer survivor and director of Charlene’s Light … A Foundation for Ovarian Cancer.
The fundraisers include a Vista Star dinner cruise on Saturday, the Elizabeth Bushe Memorial Golf Tournament at Enger Golf Course on Sunday and a Seasons at the Barn fine arts and crafts sale at 2300 Jean Duluth Road, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday through Saturday.
To learn more, call Greer at (612) 703-8148, e-mail her at Kristine@CharlenesLight.org or go to www.CharlenesLight.org.