Opioid Abuse

Aetna Sponsors Third Annual Opioid Forum in DeKalb County

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05.15.19
Larry Johnson, National Association of Counties Chairman of the Large Urban County Caucus, speaking during the recent opioid summit in Georgia.
Larry Johnson, National Association of Counties Chairman of the Large Urban County Caucus, speaking during the recent opioid summit in Georgia.
Frank Ulibarri, Georgia and Gulf States market president, spoke at the event.
Frank Ulibarri, Georgia and Gulf States market president, spoke at the event.

As national efforts continue to combat opioid use disorder (OUD), the Aetna Georgia Markets team is committed to supporting their local community.

These efforts were showcased in the third annual DeKalb County Opioid Summit – where the focus was on ways to help youth and families in the county overcome the challenges of OUD.

Aetna, a CVS Health company, sponsored the May 2 summit. The event highlighted the local impacts of this health issue and Aetna’s commitment to help at the local level. The event featured youth from local high schools, stakeho­­­­lders and community leaders.

This diverse group of stakeholders discussed the opioid epidemic from their perspective, bringing to light the negative aspects they see daily and the opportunities to improve the situation in DeKalb and for the state. Frank Ulibarri, Georgia and Gulf States market president, represented Aetna.

The local impacts of the crisis

In 2013, Antoinette Tuff found herself held hostage as a bookkeeper in a local school in Georgia but was able to disarm the gunman by talking him into surrendering to the police. After that experience, Tuff founded Kids on the Move for Success, which is an organization dedicated to helping children see the positive in life.

“No matter what it looks like today, it will be better tomorrow,” said Huff, who spoke at the summit. “Kids today face so much and are more likely to turn to drugs to feel better or to escape. This epidemic is not in some distant land, it’s in our front yards and we need to deal with it.”

For panelist Robin Elliot, working to solve the abuse of opioids is her life’s mission.

The death of Elliott’s son from a heroin overdose has made her become an advocate in Georgia. Elliott’s organization GA Overdose Prevention has dispensed over 1,000 Narcan kits across Georgia to help those who may experience an overdose. She’s also worked to pass a Georgia law that prohibits any legal action against someone who may have overdosed (from any substance).

Hyancinth Douglas, a juvenile probation supervisor and youth advocate, talked about how teenagers need to find positive support in their teachers, mentors and family members and reach out to them.

“Educate yourself about drugs,” said Douglas. “Try to determine what triggers you, and use your support system to help. There is no shame here.”

In a workshop hosted by CVS Health, two pharmacists outlined the real threat that opioids pose to the community and the entire country.

In a packed classroom, the pharmacists cautioned that adolescents are at an increased risk for addiction since their brains are still developing.

Ulibarri said he was proud to again be a part of this meaningful event.

“We are honored to once again collaborate on the third annual forum of this kind in DeKalb County,” said Ulibarri. “As a fellow Georgian, I’m proud of Aetna’s mission to help people on their path to better health – including the time and resources that have been dedicated to tackling the most-pressing issues facing the communities where we live and work. Working together with DeKalb County and other local stakeholders, we’re able to explore the impact of OUD on our youth and families and to discuss how to best combat it. It is ultimately on all of us to act.”

Aetna is committed to combatting OUD with a multifaceted strategy focused on preventing prescription opioid misuse and addiction, intervening in at-risk behavior, and supporting members with access to treatment for addiction. For more information on our efforts, click here. Similarly, CVS Health has made an enterprise-wide commitment to help address prescription opioid use disorder by designing programs to increase access to safe medication disposal, encourage appropriate utilization, educate patients and communities, expand access to life-saving overdose reversal agents, and support local recovery programs. For more information on those efforts, click here.

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CVS Health Introduces Safe Medication Disposal Inside CVS Pharmacy, Marking National Prescription Drug Take Back Day

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10.25.17

WOONSOCKET, R.I., Oct. 25, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, CVS Health (NYSE: CVS) officially introduced the expansion of the company's safe medication disposal program to include locations inside CVS Pharmacy stores, marking the Drug Enforcement Administration's National Prescription Drug Take Back Day on Saturday, October 28. The new safe medication disposal kiosks inside 750 CVS Pharmacy locations will add to the more than 800 units CVS Health has donated to law enforcement officials across the country, which have collected more than 100 metric tons of unwanted medication. Properly disposing of unused medications can reduce the risk of misuse, abuse or diversion.

"Solving the opioid crisis will not be easy and it will take the concerted effort of patients, providers, payors, pharmacies, advocacy organizations, elected officials and community leaders," said Thomas M. Moriarty, Executive Vice President, Chief Policy and External Affairs Officer, and General Counsel, CVS Health. "Our safe medication disposal program is just one of the many initiatives we have undertaken to help prevent opioid abuse and drug addiction in our communities."

CVS Health is unveiling its first disposal units inside CVS Pharmacy locations in Wilmington, North Carolina and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania this week.

"The opioid crisis is tearing apart families all over North Carolina and this nation," said Attorney General Josh Stein of North Carolina. "Safely disposing of unneeded medications is an important and simple step we can all take to keep these drugs out of the wrong hands. I applaud and thank CVS for making it easier for us to get rid of these dangerous and highly addictive drugs."

"Eighty percent of heroin users start with a legal prescription drug," Attorney General Josh Shapiro of Pennsylvania said. "We appreciate this effort to end diversion of these highly addictive drugs."

Together with law enforcement, CVS Health also continues to underscore the importance of proper medication disposal this week at the Chatham County Sheriff's Office in Savannah, Georgia, which has received two medication disposal units from CVS Health.

"The opioid epidemic is one of the greatest public health threats facing our country, one that took the lives of 982 Georgians just last year," said Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr. "It affects every state and has a devastating impact on our communities tearing apart families and stretching the budgets of local law enforcement and first responders as they do the difficult work on the front lines. CVS Health is continuing to find innovative ways to help in this fight, and we are very grateful to have them as a partner in our Drug Take Back efforts in Georgia."

National Prescription Drug Take Back Day aims to provide a safe, convenient, and responsible means of disposing of prescription drugs, while also educating the general public about the potential for abuse of medications. Nearly 100 CVS Pharmacy locations will be among the many sites across the country where law enforcement will hold a one-day event to collect unwanted prescription medication. Patients can find a participating medication return location using this location finder tool.

CVS Health is also working to address and prevent prescription drug abuse by increasing access to the opioid-overdose reversal medication naloxone in 43 states. Additionally, through the company's Pharmacists Teach program, CVS pharmacists have volunteered to educate more than 300,000 students about the dangers of prescription drug abuse.

In September, CVS Health announced an expansion of its enterprise initiatives to fight the opioid abuse epidemic by limiting to seven days the supply of opioids dispensed for certain acute prescriptions for patients who are new to therapy; limiting the daily dosage of opioids dispensed based on the strength of the opioid; and requiring use of immediate-release formulations of opioids before extended release opioids are dispensed.

About CVS Health

CVS Health is a pharmacy innovation company helping people on their path to better health. Through its 9,700 retail locations, more than 1,100 walk-in medical clinics, a leading pharmacy benefits manager with nearly 90 million plan members, a dedicated senior pharmacy care business serving more than one million patients per year, expanding specialty pharmacy services, and a leading stand-alone Medicare Part D prescription drug plan, the company enables people, businesses and communities to manage health in more affordable and effective ways. This unique integrated model increases access to quality care, delivers better health outcomes and lowers overall health care costs. Find more information about how CVS Health is shaping the future of health at https://www.cvshealth.com.

Media Contacts:

Erin Shields Britt
(401) 770-9237
Erin.Britt@CVSHealth.com

Amy Lanctot
401-770-2931
Amy.Lanctot@CVSHealth.com

SOURCE CVS Health

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CVS Health to Install 1,100 Additional Safe Medication Disposal Units and Expand Youth Opioid Abuse Prevention Program

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10.24.18

New commitments announced at White House event highlighting efforts to address opioid abuse

WOONSOCKET, R.I., Oct. 24, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- CVS Health (NYSE: CVS) announced today that the company will enhance and expand two of its signature programs focused on helping prevent prescription opioid abuse. Specifically, CVS Health said it will install 1,100 additional safe medication disposal units in CVS Pharmacy locations and local police departments by the end of next year, bringing the total number of safe medication units provided by the company to more than 2,700. Additionally, CVS Health committed to reaching an additional 250,000 students and parents with its opioid abuse prevention education program, Pharmacists Teach, bringing the total number of community participants reached by the program to more than 655,000 by the end of next year. The announcement was made at an event hosted by President Trump at the White House today highlighting new efforts to address the opioid epidemic.

"CVS Health is dedicated to helping the communities we serve address and prevent opioid abuse through our commitment to many different programs and partnerships, including increasing access to safe medication disposal and youth opioid abuse prevention education," said Thomas Moriarty, Chief Policy and External Affairs Officer, CVS Health. "We have seen firsthand the impact our efforts have already made and we are excited to expand and enhance these initiatives even further."

CVS Health has already installed safe medication disposal units in more than 750 CVS Pharmacy locations nationwide and has donated more than 900 additional units to community locations such as police departments. Together, these units have collected more than 217 metric tons, or 480,000 pounds, of unwanted medication. Local law enforcement officials can apply online to receive a safe medication disposal unit through this program.

In addition to its commitment to assisting with safe medication disposal, CVS Health has already educated more than 400,000 students and parents about the dangers of prescription opioid abuse with its Pharmacists Teach program. Through this program, CVS pharmacists visit local schools in their community to talk to students and parents about the dangers of misusing prescription drugs using a curriculum developed by CVS Health together with the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids. Local schools are encouraged to reach out to the Pharmacists Teach program to inquire about scheduling a presentation.

CVS Health is also working to help combat opioid abuse by increasing access to the opioid overdose drug naloxone. CVS Pharmacy locations in 48 states have standing orders, or similar protocol, which allow patients to obtain this medication without an individual prescription. Additionally, as a Pharmacy Benefit Manager (PBM), CVS Health offers programs to help its clients reduce opioid utilization for members when clinically appropriate. CVS Health also provides enhanced retail pharmacist-led patient counseling on safe prescription opioid use. These programs align with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain.

About CVS Health

CVS Health is a pharmacy innovation company helping people on their path to better health. Through its more than 9,800 retail locations, more than 1,100 walk-in medical clinics, a leading pharmacy benefits manager with approximately 94 million plan members, a dedicated senior pharmacy care business serving more than one million patients per year, expanding specialty pharmacy services, and a leading stand-alone Medicare Part D prescription drug plan, the company enables people, businesses and communities to manage health in more affordable and effective ways. This unique integrated model increases access to quality care, delivers better health outcomes and lowers overall health care costs. Find more information about how CVS Health is shaping the future of health at https://www.cvshealth.com.

Media Contact:

Erin Shields Britt
Corporate Communications
(401) 770-9237
Erin.Britt@CVSHealth.com

SOURCE CVS Health

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CVS Pharmacy Completes Rollout of Time Delay Safes in All of Its Maryland Pharmacies

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10.16.18

New safes for controlled substances will help combat opioid epidemic, reduce robbery incidents

All 228 CVS Pharmacy locations in Maryland area now using time-delay safe technology

WOONSOCKET, R.I., Oct. 16, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- CVS Pharmacy, the retail division of CVS Health (NYSE: CVS), announced today that it has completed the rollout of time delay safes in all of its 228 CVS Pharmacy locations in Maryland. The safes will help prevent pharmacy robberies and combat the ongoing opioid epidemic by helping to prevent diversion of controlled substance narcotic medications by keeping them out of the hands of unauthorized individuals. In addition, the safes will help CVS Pharmacy ensure the safety and well-being of its customers and employees.

Controlled substance narcotic medications that are sought after by robbers, such as oxycodone and hydrocodone, are now stored in time delay safes in every CVS Pharmacy in the state of Maryland. Time delay safes help deter pharmacy robberies by electronically delaying the time it takes for pharmacy employees to be able to open the safe. CVS Pharmacy first implemented time delay safes in Indianapolis, a city experiencing a high volume of pharmacy robberies, in 2015. The company saw a 70 percent decline in pharmacy robberies among the Indianapolis stores where the time delay safes had been installed.

"Pharmacy robberies are a challenging issue for every pharmacy and we are committed to doing all we can to reduce the number of pharmacy robbery incidents in our Maryland stores," said Roger Francis, Division Vice President of CVS Pharmacy in Maryland. "In other parts of the country we have seen that time delay safes, combined with the other security policies and procedures in place at our stores, can greatly reduce these incidents. We are pleased to roll out time delay safes here in Maryland to help ensure that our pharmacies remain a safe environment for our patients and colleagues."

The time delay function cannot be overridden and is designed to serve as a deterrent to would-be pharmacy robbers whose goal is to enter and exit their robbery targets as quickly as possible. All CVS Pharmacy locations with time delay safes display highly-visible signage to inform the public that time delay safes are in use to prevent on-demand access to controlled substance narcotics.

The implementation of time delay safes across all CVS Pharmacy locations in Maryland is the latest in a series of measures put in place by CVS Health to help combat prescription drug abuse in the state. CVS Health's commitment to preventing and addressing prescription drug abuse extends to community education, efforts to encourage safe disposal of unused medication and increasing access to the opioid overdose-reversal drug naloxone. The company's Pharmacists Teach program brings CVS Pharmacists to schools across the country to talk to students and parents about the dangers of prescription drug abuse. More than 405,000 students across the country, including more than 5,600 in Maryland, have participated in the program.

CVS Health has also completed installation of 19 safe medication disposal units in CVS Pharmacy stores in Maryland, in addition to the three units it has donated to Maryland law enforcement agencies. Nationwide, 750 safe medication disposal units have been installed in CVS Pharmacy locations, adding to the more than 900 units the company has donated to law enforcement agencies. In total, the company has facilitated more than 1,650 units nationwide, which have collected more than 480,000 pounds, or 2017 metric tons of unwanted medication, including more than 6,000 pounds, or nearly three metric tons in Maryland alone. Increasing community access to safe medication disposal helps rid homes of unused medications that could otherwise be diverted, abused or contaminate the water supply if disposed of improperly.

Additionally, CVS Health has worked with 48 states including Maryland to increase access to the opioid overdose-reversal drug naloxone, also known as Narcan. Patients can obtain this life-saving medication, which is a safe and effective antidote to opioid overdoses, without an individual prescription in these states.

About CVS Pharmacy

CVS Pharmacy, the retail division of CVS Health (NYSE: CVS), is America's leading retail pharmacy with over 9,800 locations. It is the first national pharmacy to end the sale of tobacco and the first pharmacy in the nation to receive the Community Pharmacy accreditation from URAC, the leading health care accreditation organization that establishes quality standards for the health care industry. CVS Pharmacy is reinventing pharmacy to help people on their path to better health by providing the most accessible and personalized expertise, both in its stores and online at CVS.com. General information about CVS Pharmacy is available at http://www.cvshealth.com.

Media Contact:

Amy Lanctot
(401) 770-2931
Amy.Lanctot@CVSHealth.com

SOURCE CVS Pharmacy

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CVS Health Encourages Consumers to Safely Dispose of Prescription Drugs Ahead of National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day on October 27

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10.15.18

More than 1,670 community and CVS Pharmacy locations and hundreds of events provide convenient disposal options for medicine cabinet cleanout

WOONSOCKET, R.I., Oct. 15, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- CVS Health (NYSE: CVS) is encouraging consumers to clean out their medicine cabinets and safely dispose of unused prescription medication on National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day, this October 27. CVS Health has installed safe medication disposal units in more than 750 CVS Pharmacy locations nationwide and has donated more than 900 additional units to community locations such as police departments. Together, these units have collected more than 217 metric tons, or 480,000 pounds, of unwanted medication. Additionally, on October 27, nearly 100 CVS Pharmacy locations will join other community sites around the country to host law enforcement take-back events, allowing the public to safely dispose of unwanted medication. National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day is hosted biannually by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to provide an opportunity for Americans to help prevent drug addiction and overdose deaths.

"CVS Health is dedicated to helping address and prevent prescription drug abuse and misuse, which is why we have worked to increase access to and awareness of safe medication disposal options in the communities we serve," said Tom Davis, R.Ph., Vice President of Professional Services for CVS Pharmacy. "Unused medications, especially opioids, should not be left in medicine cabinets where they could be at risk of misuse or diversion. We are proud to have supported the collection of more than 480,000 pounds of unwanted medication to date, getting it out of homes and disposed of safely, and we are looking forward to adding to that achievement."

According to the 2016 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 6.2 million Americans misused controlled prescriptions and often obtained them from family and friends. In-home medicine cabinets are often the source of diverted prescriptions, making it critical for patients to properly dispose of unused prescriptions in a timely manner to prevent prescription misuse and diversion.

In addition to promoting safe medication disposal, the company is also working to combat the opioid epidemic by increasing access to the opioid overdose drug naloxone. CVS Pharmacy locations in 48 states have standing orders, or similar protocol, which allow patients to obtain this medication without an individual prescription. CVS Health has also focused on opioid abuse prevention through the company's Pharmacists Teach program. This program connects CVS pharmacists to local schools to talk with students and parents about the dangers of abusing prescription drugs, using a curriculum CVS Health developed with the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids. More than 400,000 students and parents nationwide have participated in the program.

Additionally, as a Pharmacy Benefit Manager (PBM) and a retail pharmacy, CVS Health has implemented programs to help its clients reduce opioid utilization for members when clinically appropriate and strengthened retail pharmacist-led patient counseling on safe opioid use. These programs align with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain.

About CVS Health

CVS Health is a pharmacy innovation company helping people on their path to better health. Through its more than 9,800 retail locations, more than 1,100 walk-in medical clinics, a leading pharmacy benefits manager with approximately 94 million plan members, a dedicated senior pharmacy care business serving more than one million patients per year, expanding specialty pharmacy services, and a leading stand-alone Medicare Part D prescription drug plan, the company enables people, businesses and communities to manage health in more affordable and effective ways. This unique integrated model increases access to quality care, delivers better health outcomes and lowers overall health care costs. Find more information about how CVS Health is shaping the future of health at https://www.cvshealth.com.

Media Contact:

Erin Shields Britt
(401) 770-9237
Erin.Britt@CVSHealth.com

Amy Lanctot
(401) 770-2931
Amy.Lanctot@CVSHealth.com

SOURCE CVS Health

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CVS Pharmacy Completes Rollout of Time Delay Safes in All Washington, DC Pharmacy Locations

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10.16.18

New time delay safe technology in use for controlled substances will help combat opioid epidemic, reduce robbery incidents

All 55 CVS Pharmacy locations in the District of Columbia now using time delay safes

WOONSOCKET, R.I., Oct. 16, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- CVS Pharmacy, the retail division of CVS Health (NYSE: CVS), announced today that it has completed the rollout of time delay safes in all of its 55 CVS Pharmacy locations in Washington, DC. The safes will help prevent pharmacy robberies and combat the ongoing opioid epidemic by helping to prevent diversion of controlled substance narcotic medications by keeping them out of the hands of unauthorized individuals. In addition, the safes will help CVS Pharmacy ensure the safety and well-being of its customers and employees.

Controlled substance narcotic medications that are sought after by robbers, such as oxycodone and hydrocodone, are now stored in safes using time delay technology in every CVS Pharmacy in the District of Columbia. Time delay safes help deter pharmacy robberies by electronically delaying the time it takes for pharmacy employees to be able to open the safe. CVS Pharmacy first implemented time delay safes in Indianapolis, a city experiencing a high volume of pharmacy robberies, in 2015. The company saw a 70 percent decline in pharmacy robberies among the Indianapolis stores where the time delay safes had been installed.

"Pharmacy robberies are a challenging issue for every pharmacy and we are committed to doing all we can to reduce the number of pharmacy robbery incidents in our Washington, DC stores," said Roger Francis, Division Vice President of CVS Pharmacy. "In other parts of the country we have seen that time delay safes, combined with the other security policies and procedures in place at our stores, can greatly reduce these incidents. We are pleased to roll out time delay safes here in the District of Columbia to help ensure that our pharmacies remain a safe environment for our patients and colleagues."

The time delay function cannot be overridden and is designed to serve as a deterrent to would-be pharmacy robbers whose goal is to enter and exit their robbery targets as quickly as possible. All CVS Pharmacy locations with time delay safes display highly-visible signage to inform the public that time delay safes are in use to prevent on-demand access to controlled substance narcotics.

The implementation of time delay safes across all CVS Pharmacy locations in Washington, DC is the latest in a series of measures put in place by CVS Health to help combat prescription drug abuse in the District. CVS Health's commitment to preventing and addressing prescription drug abuse extends to community education, efforts to encourage safe disposal of unused medication and increasing access to the opioid overdose-reversal drug naloxone. The company's Pharmacists Teach program brings CVS Pharmacists to schools across the country to talk to students and parents about the dangers of prescription drug abuse. More than 405,000 students across the country, including more than 400 in the District, have participated in the program.

CVS Health has also completed installation of three safe medication disposal units in CVS Pharmacy stores in Washington, DC. Nationwide, 750 safe medication disposal units have been installed in CVS Pharmacy locations, adding to the more than 900 units the company has donated to law enforcement agencies. In total, the company has facilitated more than 1,650 units nationwide, which have collected more than 480,000 pounds, or 217 metric tons of unwanted medication. Increasing community access to safe medication disposal helps rid homes of unused medications that could otherwise be diverted, abused or contaminate the water supply if disposed of improperly.

About CVS Pharmacy

CVS Pharmacy, the retail division of CVS Health (NYSE: CVS), is America's leading retail pharmacy with over 9,800 locations. It is the first national pharmacy to end the sale of tobacco and the first pharmacy in the nation to receive the Community Pharmacy accreditation from URAC, the leading health care accreditation organization that establishes quality standards for the health care industry. CVS Pharmacy is reinventing pharmacy to help people on their path to better health by providing the most accessible and personalized expertise, both in its stores and online at CVS.com. General information about CVS Pharmacy is available at http://www.cvshealth.com.

Media Contact:

Amy Lanctot
(401) 770-2931
Amy.Lanctot@CVSHealth.com

SOURCE CVS Pharmacy

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CVS Health, Sheriff Tom Dart Announce Joint Effort to Raise Consumer Awareness about Safe Medication Disposal in Cook County, Ill.

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10.25.18

Sheriff Dart, CVS Pharmacy leaders urge consumers to safely dispose of unwanted medications, especially on National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day, this Saturday 10/27

WOONSOCKET, R.I., Oct. 25, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- CVS Health (NYSE: CVS) and Cook County Sheriff Thomas J. Dart today announced a joint effort to raise consumer awareness about the importance of safe medication disposal.

Approximately 150 CVS Pharmacy locations in Cook County will now provide patients with information about the Sheriff's Prescription Drug Take Back Program on packaging that accompanies the prescription. The information will help patients find their nearest safe disposal location.

Sheriff Dart joined CVS Pharmacy District Leader Pooja Patel, Pharm.D., at a CVS Pharmacy in Oak Park, Ill. today to highlight the importance of safe disposal in protecting the environment and preventing drug abuse and accidental poisoning. The announcement came in advance of Saturday's National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, sponsored by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration.

"CVS Health is dedicated to helping address and prevent prescription drug abuse and misuse, which is why we have worked to increase access to and awareness of safe medication disposal options in the communities we serve," said Tom Davis, R.Ph., Vice President of Professional Services for CVS Pharmacy. "Unused medications, especially opioids, should not be left in medicine cabinets where they could be at risk of misuse or diversion. We are proud to partner with Sheriff Dart to raise awareness of safe disposal and we look forward to adding to our collection totals this weekend on Take-Back Day."

"This partnership will help ensure more prescription drugs are safely disposed and not available for abuse," said Sheriff Dart. "In the midst of the unrelenting opioid crisis, this is an important step that can help ensure potentially dangerous prescriptions do not end up in the wrong hands."

The Sheriff's Prescription Drug Take Back Program began in 2012 and currently collects nearly 2,000 pounds of unused pharmaceuticals per month via 80 sites throughout the county. Additionally, CVS Health has installed year-round safe medication disposal units in 45 CVS Pharmacy locations and 33 local police departments in Illinois to further increase community access to safe and convenient locations to properly dispose of unwanted medications. Together, these units have already collected more than seven metric tons, or 15,600 pounds, of unwanted medication.

According to the 2016 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 6.2 million Americans misused controlled prescriptions and often obtained them from family and friends. In-home medicine cabinets are often the source of diverted prescriptions, making it critical for patients to properly dispose of unused prescriptions in a timely manner.

Consumers can access the Sheriff's Prescription Drug Take Back Program to find a safe, convenient disposal location by visiting www.cookcountysheriff.org or calling 1-844-688-7379. Additionally, sites in Cook County and across the country can be found by using the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration's (DEA) Collection Site Locator.

In addition to assisting with safe medication disposal, CVS Health is also working to combat opioid abuse by increasing access to the opioid overdose drug naloxone. CVS Pharmacy locations in 48 states, including Illinois, have standing orders, or similar protocols, which allow patients to obtain this medication without an individual prescription. CVS Health has also focused on opioid abuse prevention through the company's Pharmacists Teach program. This program connects CVS pharmacists to local schools to talk with students and parents about the dangers of abusing prescription drugs, using a curriculum CVS Health developed with the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids. Nearly 7,000 students and parents in Illinois have participated in the program.

As a Pharmacy Benefit Manager (PBM), CVS Health offers programs to help its clients reduce opioid utilization for members when clinically appropriate. CVS Health also provides enhanced retail pharmacist-led patient counseling on safe prescription opioid use. These programs align with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain.

About CVS Health

CVS Health is a pharmacy innovation company helping people on their path to better health. Through its more than 9,800 retail locations, more than 1,100 walk-in medical clinics, a leading pharmacy benefits manager with approximately 94 million plan members, a dedicated senior pharmacy care business serving more than one million patients per year, expanding specialty pharmacy services, and a leading stand-alone Medicare Part D prescription drug plan, the company enables people, businesses and communities to manage health in more affordable and effective ways. This unique integrated model increases access to quality care, delivers better health outcomes and lowers overall health care costs. Find more information about how CVS Health is shaping the future of health at https://www.cvshealth.com.

Media Contact:

Erin Shields Britt
(401) 770-9237
Erin.Britt@CVSHealth.com

Cook County Sheriff Press Office
(312) 603-4242
ccso.communications@cookcountyil.gov

SOURCE CVS Health

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CVS Pharmacy Completes Rollout of Time Delay Safes in All Kentucky Pharmacy Locations

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12.04.18

New time delay safe technology in use for controlled substances will help combat opioid epidemic, reduce robbery incidents

All 77 CVS Pharmacy locations in the state of Kentucky now using time delay safes

WOONSOCKET, R.I., Dec. 4, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- CVS Pharmacy, the retail division of CVS Health (NYSE: CVS), announced today that it has completed the rollout of time delay safes in all of its 77 CVS Pharmacy locations in Kentucky. The safes will help prevent pharmacy robberies and combat the ongoing opioid epidemic by helping to prevent diversion of controlled substance narcotic medications by keeping them out of the hands of unauthorized individuals. In addition, the safes will help CVS Pharmacy ensure the safety and well-being of its customers and employees.

Controlled substance narcotic medications that are sought after by robbers, such as oxycodone and hydrocodone, are now stored in safes using time delay technology in every CVS Pharmacy in the state of Kentucky. Time delay safes help deter pharmacy robberies by electronically delaying the time it takes for pharmacy employees to be able to open the safe. CVS Pharmacy first implemented time delay safes in Indianapolis, a city experiencing a high volume of pharmacy robberies, in 2015. The company saw a 70 percent decline in pharmacy robberies among the Indianapolis stores where the time delay safes had been installed.

"Pharmacy robberies are a challenging issue for every pharmacy and we are committed to doing all we can to reduce the number of pharmacy robbery incidents in our Kentucky stores," said Everett Moore, Division Vice President of CVS Pharmacy. "In other parts of the country we have seen that time delay safes, combined with the other security policies and procedures in place at our stores, can greatly reduce these incidents. We are pleased to roll out time delay safes here in Kentucky to help ensure that our pharmacies remain a safe environment for our patients and colleagues."

"I applaud CVS Health on the installation of time delay safes in all of their Kentucky pharmacies," said State Senator Julie Raque Adams. "The opioid epidemic has hit Kentucky especially hard, as it has so many other states, and our communities are working to fight this growing problem each and every day. An important way to do so is to ensure that medications are kept out of the wrong hands and the safes now in place at CVS Pharmacy locations in Kentucky will help do just that."

"Substance misuse is a significant driver of criminal behavior, as people sometimes turn to illegal behavior to fuel their addictions," said Louisville Metro Police Chief Steve Conrad. "I am very pleased that our partners at CVS Health are taking additional steps to reduce thefts from their stores. It takes all of us as a community working together to address the high rates of addiction we are seeing and to reduce the crime that often comes with that."

The time delay function cannot be overridden and is designed to serve as a deterrent to would-be pharmacy robbers whose goal is to enter and exit their robbery targets as quickly as possible. All CVS Pharmacy locations with time delay safes display highly-visible signage to inform the public that time delay safes are in use to prevent on-demand access to controlled substance narcotics.

The implementation of time delay safes across all CVS Pharmacy locations in Kentucky is the latest in a series of measures put in place by CVS Health to help combat prescription drug abuse in the state. CVS Health's commitment to preventing and addressing prescription drug abuse extends to community education, efforts to encourage safe disposal of unused medication and increasing access to the opioid overdose-reversal drug naloxone. The company's Pharmacists Teach program brings CVS Pharmacists to schools across the country to talk to students and parents about the dangers of prescription drug abuse. More than 418,000 students across the country, including nearly 3,000 in Kentucky, have participated in the program.

CVS Health has also completed installation of nine safe medication disposal units in CVS Pharmacy stores in Kentucky. Nationwide, 750 safe medication disposal units have been installed in CVS Pharmacy locations, adding to the more than 900 units the company has donated to law enforcement agencies. The company has committed to installing an additional 1,100 units in 2019. In total, the company has facilitated more than 1,650 units nationwide, which have collected more than 555,000 pounds, or 252 metric tons of unwanted medication to date. Increasing community access to safe medication disposal helps rid homes of unused medications that could otherwise be diverted, abused or contaminate the water supply if disposed of improperly.

About CVS Pharmacy

CVS Pharmacy, the retail division of CVS Health (NYSE: CVS), is America's leading retail pharmacy with over 9,800 locations. It is the first national pharmacy to end the sale of tobacco and the first pharmacy in the nation to receive the Community Pharmacy accreditation from URAC, the leading health care accreditation organization that establishes quality standards for the health care industry. CVS Pharmacy is reinventing pharmacy to help people on their path to better health by providing the most accessible and personalized expertise, both in its stores and online at CVS.com. General information about CVS Pharmacy is available at http://www.cvshealth.com.

Media Contact:

Amy Lanctot
Cell: (401) 258-9216
Amy.Lanctot@CVSHealth.com

SOURCE CVS Pharmacy

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CVS Health Underscores Commitment to Safe Medication Disposal Ahead of National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day on April 28

Top of the article
04.26.18

Company announces success of disposal program with nearly 350,000 pounds of unwanted medication collected across more than 1,400 disposal kiosks

WOONSOCKET, R.I., April 26, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- CVS Health (NYSE: CVS) today underscored the company's commitment to helping communities safely dispose of unwanted medications, particularly as an important step in helping to address and prevent opioid abuse and misuse. The company announced its safe medication disposal efforts have collected nearly 350,000 pounds, or 158 metric tons, of unwanted medication. This Saturday, April 28, is the DEA's National Prescription Take-Back Day, during which more than 100 CVS Pharmacy locations will join other community sites around the country to host law enforcement take-back events, allowing the public to safely dispose of unwanted medication.

"CVS Health is dedicated to helping address and prevent opioid abuse in the communities we serve and we know that increasing community access to safe medication disposal is a critical component of that effort," said Tom Davis, R.Ph., Vice President of Professional Services for CVS Pharmacy. "Unused medications, especially opioids, should not be left in medicine cabinets where they could be at risk of misuse or diversion, which is why we are so proud to have supported the collection of nearly 350,000 pounds of unwanted medication, getting it out of homes and disposed of safely."

Last September, as part of a major expansion of its efforts to combat the opioid epidemic, CVS Health announced it would extend its safe medication disposal program to 750 CVS Pharmacy locations this year. The company now has more than 500 of those units installed and expects to complete installation of all units this summer. The CVS Pharmacy disposal locations add to the nearly 900 units CVS Health has donated to local law enforcement to facilitate community drug take-back efforts.

In addition to promoting safe medication disposal, the company is also working to combat the opioid epidemic by increasing access to the opioid overdose drug naloxone. CVS Pharmacy locations in 46 states have standing orders, or similar protocol, which allow patients to obtain this medication without an individual prescription. CVS Health has also focused on opioid abuse prevention through the company's Pharmacists Teach program. This program connects CVS pharmacists to local schools to talk with students and parents about the dangers of abusing prescription drugs, using a curriculum CVS Health developed with the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids. More than 350,000 students and parents nationwide have participated in the program.

About CVS Health

CVS Health is a pharmacy innovation company helping people on their path to better health. Through its more than 9,800 retail locations, more than 1,100 walk-in medical clinics, a leading pharmacy benefits manager with more than 94 million plan members, a dedicated senior pharmacy care business serving more than one million patients per year, expanding specialty pharmacy services, and a leading stand-alone Medicare Part D prescription drug plan, the company enables people, businesses and communities to manage health in more affordable and effective ways. This unique integrated model increases access to quality care, delivers better health outcomes and lowers overall health care costs. Find more information about how CVS Health is shaping the future of health at https://www.cvshealth.com.

Media Contact:

Erin Shields Britt
Corporate Communications
(401) 770-9237
Erin.Britt@CVSHealth.com

SOURCE CVS Health

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CVS Pharmacy Completes Rollout of Time Delay Safes in All California Stores

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10.10.18

New safes for controlled substances will help combat opioid epidemic, reduce robbery incidents

Nearly 900 CVS Pharmacy locations in California now using time-delay safe technology

WOONSOCKET, R.I., Oct. 10, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- CVS Pharmacy, the retail division of CVS Health (NYSE: CVS), announced today that it has completed the rollout of time delay safes in nearly 900 of its free-standing stores in California. The safes will help prevent pharmacy robberies and combat the ongoing opioid epidemic by helping to prevent diversion of controlled substance narcotic medications by keeping them out of the hands of unauthorized individuals. In addition, the safes will help CVS Pharmacy ensure the safety and well-being of its customers and employees.

Controlled substance narcotic medications that are sought after by robbers, such as oxycodone and hydrocodone, are now stored in time delay safes in every CVS Pharmacy store in the state of California. Time delay safes help deter pharmacy robberies by electronically delaying the time it takes for pharmacy employees to be able to open the safe. CVS Pharmacy first implemented time delay safes in Indianapolis, a city experiencing a high volume of pharmacy robberies, in 2016. The company saw a 70 percent decline in pharmacy robberies among the Indianapolis stores where the time delay safes had been installed.

"Pharmacy robberies are a challenging issue for every pharmacy and we are committed to doing all we can to reduce the number of pharmacy robbery incidents in our California stores," said Hank Casillas, Division Vice President of CVS Pharmacy in California. "We have seen that time delay safes, combined with the other security policies and procedures in place at our stores, can greatly reduce these incidents and are pleased to roll out this enhanced security measure. These safes will help ensure that our stores remain a safe environment for our patients and colleagues."

"Combating the opioid crisis requires multiple different actions. Increasing education, promoting safe prescribing practices and preventing diversion of these pills for illicit use are some of the most efficient methods to address this epidemic. CVS Health was one of the first to embrace a 7-day quantity restriction on opioids and once again, they've proven themselves to be on the forefront of this battle, by installing time-delay safes in their pharmacies," said California State Assembly Member Autumn Burke. "I applaud CVS Health for their leadership and taking this important step. By preventing access to those intent on distributing these pills illegally, many lives will be saved."

The time delay function cannot be overridden and is designed to serve as a deterrent to would-be pharmacy robbers whose goal is to enter and exit their robbery targets as quickly as possible. All CVS Pharmacy stores with time delay safes display highly-visible signage to inform the public that time delay safes are in use to prevent on-demand access to controlled substance narcotics.

The implementation of time delay safes across CVS Pharmacy stores in California is the latest in a series of measures put in place by CVS Health to help combat prescription drug abuse in the state. CVS Health's commitment to preventing and addressing prescription drug abuse extends to community education, efforts to encourage safe disposal of unused medication and increasing access to the opioid overdose-reversal drug naloxone. The company's Pharmacists Teach program brings CVS Pharmacists to schools across the country to talk to students and parents about the dangers of prescription drug abuse. More than 405,000 students across the country, including more than 65,000 in California, have participated in the program.

CVS Health has also completed installation of 62 safe medication disposal units in CVS Pharmacy stores in California, in addition to the 21 units it has donated to California law enforcement agencies. Nationwide, 750 safe medication disposal units have been installed in CVS Pharmacy locations, adding to the more than 900 units the company has donated to law enforcement agencies. In total, the company has facilitated more than 1,650 units nationwide, which have collected more than 480,000 pounds, or 217 metric tons of unwanted medication, including more than 28,000 pounds, or more than 13 metric tons in California alone. Increasing community access to safe medication disposal helps rid homes of unused medications that could otherwise be diverted, abused or contaminate the water supply if disposed of improperly.

Additionally, CVS Health has worked with 48 states including California to increase access to the opioid overdose-reversal drug naloxone, also known as Narcan. Patients can obtain this life-saving medication, which is a safe and effective antidote to opioid overdoses, without an individual prescription in these states.

About CVS Pharmacy

CVS Pharmacy, the retail division of CVS Health (NYSE: CVS), is America's leading retail pharmacy with over 9,800 locations. It is the first national pharmacy to end the sale of tobacco and the first pharmacy in the nation to receive the Community Pharmacy accreditation from URAC, the leading health care accreditation organization that establishes quality standards for the health care industry. CVS Pharmacy is reinventing pharmacy to help people on their path to better health by providing the most accessible and personalized expertise, both in its stores and online at CVS.com. General information about CVS Pharmacy is available at http://www.cvshealth.com.

Media Contact:

Amy Lanctot
(401) 770-2931
Amy.Lanctot@CVSHealth.com

SOURCE CVS Pharmacy

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