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Project: About Time!

Erie County, PA
Program Year: 2017

“Project: It's Time!” is a youth-led, adult-supported effort to detect and deter unwanted prescription drug misuse by providing timer caps to the public for their prescription bottles. The timer caps measure the time elapsed since the last dose of medication, subsequently exposing unwanted bottle openings and diversions of prescription medications to another person. Timer caps are an easy, accurate and reliable tool. They operate like a stop watch and work on most prescription bottles. Timer caps were distributed through community partnerships at events such as Discover Presque Isle, Heroin Forums, the Cherry Festival, Country Fair Days, National Night Out, Celebrate Erie, Senior Health Fairs, school events, etc. Information on Rx misuse, diversion and disposal was disseminated to the public. Puppet presentations, mascots and “Jeopardy-style” games were used to explain prescription diversion to elementary-age audiences through cross peer activities with trained middle school, high school and college-age youth leaders during alternative activity times. Approximately 2,500 timer caps were distributed throughout the county in 2016 and 5,000 caps will be distributed in 2017 . “Project: It's Time!” built capacities in the county; Training and technical capacities increased by 50% for teams being trained in community outreach, while Human capacities increased by 500% with new youth and adult involvement. Financial capacities increased by 30% to support the effort. PHYSICAL environmental change occurred because the timer caps are a physical item that no one has ever before provided to the public locally to help detect siphoning of Rx medications. This was also an ECONOMIC environmental change since they were free to the public. In addition, the use of timer caps created a SOCIO-CULTURAL environmental change in norms. Ultimately, this new monitoring creates behavioral change. Also, because Rx misuse connects to 911 Call Centers and youth preparedness, we have received proud national Affirmed Status with Homeland Security/FEMA.

Mr. Dave Sanner
Director, office of D&A abuse