The permanent medicine disposal bin program, known as Operation Rx in Anderson County, plays an important role in keeping Tennessee clean and healthy. There are five permanent bins in Anderson County located at police stations:
Clinton Police Department, 125 W. Broad Street, Clinton, TN
Norris Police Department, 9 W. Circle Drive, Norris, TN
Oak Ridge Police Department, 200 S. Tulane Avenue, TN
Oliver Springs Police Department, 701 Main Street, Oliver Springs, TN
Rocky Top Police Department, 104 Lawson Street, Rocky Top, TN
The driving force behind this project is to provide the citizens of Anderson County an environmentally safe method to dispose of unused or expired medications while keeping unused medicine out of the hands of people who may misuse them.
Sean Richards, professor of biological and environmental sciences at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, has been studying the amounts of prescription and over the counter medications that have made it into the Tennessee River between Knoxville and Chattanooga. They have discovered trace amounts of 13 pharmaceuticals in all of their 160 sample points up and down the river. He also states that as the population grows, those numbers and amounts will also grow.
Water treatment plants are designed to filter out and remove fat-soluble compounds; so the water soluble pharmaceuticals pass straight through without getting filtered out. With the permanent disposal bins in place, residents of Anderson County now have a method of disposing their medications without them ending up in the water system. In 2015 over 1,700 pounds of medication was collected and safely disposed in Anderson County.
Brogdon, Louie. “Scientists Eye Prescription Drug Amounts in Tennessee River.” Timesfreepress.com. 12 Mar. 2014. Web. 25 Feb. 2016.
“TDEC Provides More Options for Pharmaceutical Drug Disposal.” – TN.Gov. 21 Sept. 2015. Web. 25 Feb. 2016.