Please Take CAP’s Five Minute Prescription Drug Survey TODAY
Riverhead Community Awareness Program, Inc. (CAP) and Riverhead Community Coalition for Safe and Drug-Free Youth are seeking the community’s help to evaluate its prescription drug abuse prevention initiatives through a brief online survey. The survey is for residents of Riverhead Town and the Riverhead Central School District and takes about 5 minutes to complete. You can take the survey here.
“Through our community partnerships we have successfully collected over 5,000 pounds of unused medication over the past 5 years by increasing disposal opportunities,” said Felicia Scocozza, CAP’s executive director. “But we still need input from the public to see if they are aware of these opportunities, if they need more or different options for medication safety and disposal, and if they need more information and resources about preventing prescription drug abuse and its relationship to the opioid crisis. We hope members of the community will take advantage of this opportunity, which will significantly assist with evaluating past efforts and planning future strategies and initiatives.”
In 2013, the Riverhead Community Coalition for Safe and Drug-Free Youth was awarded a 5-year Drug-Free Communities (DFC) Support Grant through the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) to prevent and reduce underage drinking and prescription drug abuse. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), prescription drug abuse is the fastest growing drug problem in the United States, especially among teens. The CDC reports that one in five teens say they have taken prescription drugs without a doctor’s prescription and each day more than 2,000 teens use prescription drugs to get high for the first time. The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) found that nearly half of young people who inject heroin reported abusing prescription painkillers before starting to use heroin. Some individuals reported taking up heroin because it is cheaper and easier to obtain than prescription drugs. In addition, more people die from prescription drug overdoses than from all illegal drugs combined. Drug overdoses are now the leading cause of accidental death in the U.S., outnumbering highway traffic fatalities.
In 2013, the coalition began expanding medication take back opportunities by installing a 24/7 medication drop box in the lobby of the Riverhead Police Department and increasing community Medication Take Events. Currently the coalition partners with the Riverhead Police Department, PBMC – Northwell Health, and the Riverhead Highway Department to hold at least 5 drive-up take back events per year, which are open to everyone, not just town residents. Last year the coalition and police department began conducting Mobile Medication Take Back Days in the Town’s senior citizen communities. These initiatives were also supported through a Town of Riverhead recycling grant. To date, over 5,000 pounds of medication have been collected and disposed of safely.
CAP and the Coalition are asking all Riverhead Town and School District residents to participate. “We are also asking residents, businesses, and other organizations to share the survey with their contacts so that we can collect meaningful data from a cross section of the community.”
The mission of the Riverhead Community Coalition for Safe and Drug-Free Youth is to engage collaborative partners in the planning, implementation, and evaluation of strategies that prevent youth substance use. In 2013, the coalition was awarded a 5-year Drug-Free Communities (DFC) Support Grant through the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP). For more information about the coalition, or to participate, please call Riverhead CAP at (631) 727-3722 or visit RiverheadCAP.org.