Acting U.S. Attorney Sean R. Berry joins the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) in announcing that on April 24th, DEA will hold its 20th National Prescription Drug Take Back Day. The biannual event will be held at thousands of collection sites around the country. The event is an effort to rid homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs.
“The National Prescription Drug Take Back Day aims to provide a safe, convenient, and responsible means of disposing of prescription drugs,” Acting U.S. Attorney Berry stated. “According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, opioid overdose deaths have increased during the pandemic. Prescription medications often end up in the wrong hands, fueling an epidemic that kills more Americans than car accidents. DEA Take Back Day provides a way for any American to step up and help combat this crisis by simply cleaning out their medicine cabinet.”
Last October Americans turned in 492.7 tons (985,392 pounds) of prescription drugs at collection sites operated by the DEA and more than 4,800 of its state and local law enforcement partners. Overall, in its 19 previous Take Back events, DEA and its partners have taken in over 13 million pounds—more than 6,800 tons—of pills. The disposal service is free and anonymous, no questions asked. The DEA cannot accept liquids, needles, or sharps, only pills or patches.
Flushing medications down the toilet or throwing them in the trash pose potential safety and health hazards. This initiative addresses the public safety and public health issues that surround medications languishing in home cabinets, becoming highly susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse.
For more information or to locate a collection site near you, go the DEA web site at https://takebackday.dea.gov/ where you can search by zip code, city, or state.
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