October 29 is National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day

Friday, October 28, 2011 | 07:59am

NASHVILLE – Tennessee Department of Mental Health (TDMH) Commissioner Doug Varney is promoting October 29 as National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day.

Due to the alarming misuse and abuse of prescription drugs across the nation, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) will be collecting and destroying potentially hazardous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs at sites nationwide. This a safe, free and anonymous service with no questions asked.

Saturday, October 29 will be the third National Take-Back Initiative event. Over the past two events, approximately 4,000 state and local law enforcement agencies throughout the nation participated, collecting over 309 tons of pills.

“Prescription drug abuse is a growing problem across out state and nation,” Varney said. “I am encouraged by efforts like the Take-Back Initiative that help to curb such abuses and educate the public about how to properly dispose of these drugs.”

National Prescription Drug Take Back Day addresses a critical public safety and health concern. Over seven million Americans currently abuse prescription drugs, according to a 2009 national survey by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). Studies have pointed to a majority of abused prescription drugs coming from family and friends, including home medicine cabinets. Prescription drug abuse rates in the United States continue to increase at an alarming rate, as do the number of accidental poisonings and prescription drug abuse related overdoses. In addition, many Americans are unaware of proper disposal methods for their unused medicines, often flushing them down the toilet or throwing them away, both of which are potential safety and health hazards.

For more information about National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day or to find a collection site near you contact the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of Diversion Control at 1-800-882-9539 or visit http://www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/drug_disposal/takeback/index.html.


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