WASHINGTON, D.C. (WIAT) — The Drug Enforcement Agency will be holding its 19th National Prescription Drug Take Back Day on Saturday at locations across the country.
The DEA says that the goal is to provide safe, convenient and responsible means of disposing prescription drugs, while also educating the general public about the potential of medication abuse.
“The initiative, now in its tenth year, addresses a vital public safety and public health issue,” said DEA Acting Administrator Timothy Shea in a written release. “Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse and abuse. Together with our partners, we are not only holding National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, but offering other ways to dispose of unwanted, unused and expired prescription medications.”
According to the DEA, the rates of prescription drug abuse in the United States are alarmingly high.
“Prescription drug abuse continues to be the nation’s fastest growing drug epidemic,” said DEA Special Agent in Charge Brad L. Byerley in the release. “Sadly, these prescription drugs are most often obtained from friends and family, who leave them in home medicine cabinets. DEA’s Take-Back initiative provides citizens an easy and safe way to dispose of unwanted prescription drugs. Please do your part to keep prescription drugs off the streets and help spread awareness in your community.”
The DEA says that collection sites will adhere to local COVID-19 guidelines and regulations to maintain the safety of all participants and local law enforcement. To find a collection site near you, visit this website.
Additionally, the DEA wants to ensure the public is aware of other ways they can dispose of unwanted prescription drugs without having to leave their homes. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Environmental Protection Agency have tips on how to safely dispose of drugs at home.