WOONSOCKET, R.I. (KNWA/KFTA) — As part of an ongoing commitment to support law enforcement and help build safer communities, CVS Health announced the installation of time delay safe technology in all 213 CVS Pharmacy locations, including those in Target stores, across Arkansas and two more states in the southern U.S.
According to a press release, the states and the corresponding number of pharmacy locations include Louisiana (133), Mississippi (57) and Arkansas (23). The safes are anticipated to “help prevent pharmacy robberies and the potential for associated diversion of controlled substance medications — including opioid medications such as oxycodone and hydrocodone — by electronically delaying the time it takes for pharmacy employees to open the safe.”
In addition, the safes are anticipated to benefit the safety and well-being of CVS Pharmacy customers and employees. The company’s rollout of time delay safe technology is in support of each of these states’ partnerships with local and state law enforcement and the retail community to fight back against escalating organized retail crime.
“Supporting law enforcement efforts in their battle against organized retail crime remains a key focus for our company,” said Thomas M. Moriarty, chief policy officer and general counsel, CVS Health, during a news conference at a CVS Pharmacy in New Orleans. “Criminal activities that organized retail crime rings fund are a clear danger to our communities, so it is important that retailers, law enforcement and political leaders work together to solve this problem. Time delay safes can help reduce the theft and diversion of prescription medications and bring added security to our stores which creates a safe environment for our patients and colleagues.”
“Crime is out of control, and it is going to take a multi-dimensional approach to help keep our neighbors safe,” said Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry. “As I work to combat criminal activities, I am grateful for public and private partners like CVS who are taking proactive approaches to enhancing public safety. Together, we can and we will make Louisiana a safer place to live, work, and visit.”
CVS Health first implemented time delay safe technology in 2015 in CVS Pharmacy locations across Indianapolis, a city experiencing a high volume of pharmacy robberies at the time. The company saw a 70 percent decline in pharmacy robberies among the Indianapolis stores where time delay safes had been installed.
Since then, the company has introduced time delay safes across 32 states nationwide, and the District of Columbia, resulting in a 50 percent decline in robberies at CVS pharmacies in those local communities. The time delay function cannot be overridden and is designed to serve as a deterrent to would-be pharmacy robbers whose goal is to enter and exit their robbery targets as quickly as possible.
All CVS Pharmacy locations with this technology display visible signage warning that time delay safes are in use to prevent on-demand access to controlled substance narcotics. The CVS Health time delay safe program is one of many company initiatives to help address and prevent prescription medication misuse and diversion.
Presently, the company supports over 4,300 safe medication disposal units in CVS Pharmacy locations and through local law enforcement organizations nationwide. Together, these existing medication disposal units have collected more than 4 million pounds of unwanted medications that might otherwise have been diverted, misused, or ended up in the water supply.