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The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) announces Take Back Day to encourage people to dispose of unused or out-of-date prescriptions safely and anonymously. The biannual event addresses vital public safety and well-being. It is scheduled for April 24, 2021.
DEA’s Take Back Day events provide an opportunity for Americans to prevent drug addiction and overdose deaths.
According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health reveals that in 2019 individuals improperly used the following prescription medications: 9.7 million people pain relievers, 4.9 million misused stimulants, and 5.9 million misused tranquilizers or sedatives. The survey also shows that most improperly used prescription drugs were obtained from family and friends, oftentimes from the original patient’s cupboard.
The last event took place in October 2020 and thousands of Americans cleaned out their drug cabinets to return a record amount of prescription medications. Individuals turned in 985, 392 pounds of medication — includes the weight of other materials other than drugs such as bottles and packaging. There were 4,587 collection sites and over 4,000 law enforcement personnel assisted with gathering the medications.
DEATakeBack.com has a location finder. By entering a zip code or city and state will locate the closest collection sites. The website is packed with additional resources including drug addiction treatment information and locater tool. Also, if there are no collection sites close by or April 24th is not convenient, there is a link for year-round facilities for disposing of unused and expired prescription drugs.
Written by Cathy Milne-Ware
DEA: Take Back Day
Mother Jones: Can You Flush Your Old Drugs Down the Toilet? By Kiera Butler
Images Courtesy of DEA’s Partnership Toolbox – Used With Permission