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Expired medications can be health threat

We all go to the doctor for medication when we are sick. However, did you know that prescription drugs can harm just as much as illicit drugs when used inappropriately?

According to a national survey on drug use and health, one in 20 people in the United States over the age of 12 reports using prescription painkillers for nonmedical purposes. Unfortunately, many teens are now claiming that prescription drugs are easier to get than beer, simply because a major source of unused medication is already in their homes — in the “medicine cabinet.”

Since prescription drugs are readily available, the percentage of drug abuse has dramatically increased over the years. According to the Oregon Partnership & Community Action to Reduce Substance Abuse, there has been a 1,743 percent increase of drug abuse treatment admission since 1992, and deaths from opiate use has also increased since 1999 by about 500 percent in Washington, Clackamas, and Multnomah counties. Lines for Life, a Portland-based hotline, has also reported that deaths from painkiller overdose exceed the amount of homicides by four times.

Generation Rx of the American Pharmacist Association-Academy of Student Pharmacists — a collaboration of pharmacy students from Pacific University — wants to call your attention to this issue. In order to raise awareness and educate the public in preventing prescription drug abuse, Generation Rx encourages every member in the community to take part in our alliance, because safe and responsible disposal can reduce the risk of accidental ingestion and potential drug abuse.

On Oct. 26, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Generation Rx will be partnering with the Hillsboro Police Department to host the national Drug Take-Back Day. On that day, at 250 S.E. 10th Ave. in Hillsboro, the police department will accept any unwanted prescription and nonprescription drugs with no questions asked (excluding Sharps, medical wastes and intravenous solutions).

Please join and help us raise awareness in the Hillsboro community in an effort to stop and prevent abuse. For more information, please call 503-615-6785.

Duy Nguyen

Esther Zeng

Jenny Ho

Generation Rx Committee

Forest Grove

Legislators urge citizens to vote ‘Yes’ on school bond

We are united in our support of Measure 34-206, the Hillsboro Schools Technology and Safety Bond.

As a hub of technological innovation, Hillsboro has a standard to maintain. Yet, as a result of years of budget cuts, our schools have not kept up with technological changes. Functioning, appropriate computers and expanded wireless access are essential to education. Over half of the district’s computers are beyond their useful life. Now is the time to provide students with the opportunities they need to succeed in college and careers.

The Hillsboro School District has done their homework in preparing for this bond. They completed a thorough analysis of technology needs and are ready to invest in an improved level of technology and an innovative learning environment. Their 5-year plan will give every student access to high quality, technology-integrated instruction.

As your state legislators, we know this is an essential investment. We can’t imagine going through our day without access to technology. Yet students and teachers deal with aged computers and poor Internet access. Our students represent our future. They need to be prepared for real world jobs that are technology based.

We urge your “Yes” vote on 34-206.

Rep. Joe Gallegos

House District 30

Sen. Bruce Starr

Senate District 15

Rep. Ben Unger

House District 29

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