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Rensselaer, Albany Counties mandate pharmacies hand out opioid deactivation products


Capital Region county executives say Friday the pandemic put a lot of their important initiatives on pause. Now, amid a more than 65 percent increase in opioid deaths nationwide in 2020 compared to 2019, Rensselaer and Albany say it’s about time to put their plans into action again.

“We are losing far too many people and [opioids] are far too accessible, and we see it all the time our take-back boxes throughout the county, throughout the state, fill up very rapidly,” says Rensselaer County Executive Steve McLaughlin.

Rensselaer County just passed a new law requiring pharmacies to provide opioid deactivating products alongside every prescription. Products like Deterra, which can neutralize unused prescriptions and make them safe to dispose of in a landfill.