BURLINGTON, Ky. (AP) — Officials in northern Kentucky are announcing a new initiative aimed at helping prevent drug abuse.

A statement from the Northern Kentucky Health Department says state Rep. Addia Wuchner has collaborated with Rep. Kim Moser, Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals and several local officials and businesses to launch a program that will provide free drug disposal pouches to ensure that medications are disposed of properly. The statement says officials will announce details of the initiative Thursday at the Boone County Sheriff's Office in Burlington.

The statement says safely disposing of medications — especially pain killers, narcotics and opioids — prevents unauthorized access to those drugs and is an important step in helping prevent addiction.