Google to tackle opioid epidemic by adding drug disposal locations to Maps

To help combat the nation's opioid crisis, Google said it will begin to displaying local prescription drug disposal locations on Google Maps.

Last month, search queries for "medication disposal near me" reached an all-time high on the tech giant's search engine, according to a Feb. 21 company blog post by Google Maps Vice President of Product Dane Glasglow.

"Fifty-three percent of prescription drug abuse starts with drugs obtained from family or friends, so we're working alongside government agencies and nonprofit organizations to help people safely remove excess or unused opioids from their medicine cabinets," Mr. Glasglow wrote.

Users looking to dispose of prescription medications will be able to search terms such as "drug drop off near me" or "medication disposal near me" on Google Maps to locate permanent disposal spots at local pharmacies, hospitals or government buildings. The program will launch with 3,500 U.S. locations.

Google's initiative is part of a partnership with the Drug Enforcement Administration, HHS, CVS, Walgreens and state governments, according to USA Today.

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