Community Safety Enhanced Through Prevention Initiatives

Substance misuse continues to pose a significant challenge in the United States. Prevention, defined as any action aimed at averting substance misuse and lessening its adverse health and societal impacts, plays a crucial role in promoting mental well-being, preventing substance misuse, and facilitating recovery and improved outcomes through treatment and support.

In alignment with national prevention endeavors, CVS Health® persistently advances initiatives to bolster community welfare by promoting medication safety and providing education on the misuse of prescription drugs and illicit substances, thereby positively influencing communities nationwide.

Our proactive stance on prevention encompasses various programs tailored to engage community members in accessible and impactful ways.

Education Initiatives at Schools: In 2020, CVS Health collaborated with Discovery Education to introduce “Dose of Knowledge” as an extension of the Pharmacist Teach program. This initiative aims to empower educators, pharmacists, parents, and community members to address substance misuse and educate youth on making informed decisions concerning their health and community well-being. “Dose of Knowledge” offers online interactive resources such as videos, lesson plans, and discussion guides, targeting students in grades K-12.

Prevention Efforts at Home: CVS Health actively participates in initiatives to combat opioid overdose by offering harm reduction products, including expanded access to naloxone—a medication that can reverse opioid overdoses—and at-home fentanyl testing kits. These efforts align with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Overdose Prevention Strategy, which emphasizes harm reduction as a pivotal approach in engaging with individuals who use drugs to equip them with life-saving tools and information.

Community Engagement: Our commitment to community support extends to providing resources for safe medication disposal and technology to aid law enforcement efforts. CVS Pharmacy locations offer in-store disposal kiosks that accept various medications, and DisposeRx® packets, available at select stores, facilitate safe medication disposal at home. Furthermore, the implementation of time-delay safes in CVS Pharmacy locations helps prevent medication diversion and pharmacy robberies, enhancing safety for patients, customers, and employees.

Impact and Opioid Response: Through initiatives like Pharmacists Teach and Dose of Knowledge, we have reached over 2.5 million students and caregivers. With over 3,900 CVS Pharmacy stores equipped with medication disposal bins, we have collected more than 7 million pounds of unwanted medication from communities. Additionally, more than 9,000 CVS Pharmacy locations now feature time-delay safes, furthering our commitment to community safety.

In addressing the opioid crisis, CVS Health collaborates with various stakeholders to enhance community-based educational programs, establish safe prescription drug disposal sites, expand access to harm reduction medications, and advocate for effective policies at local and national levels.

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