Drug Take-Back Day expands nationwide

RBC I The United States Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA’s) sixth National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day, held locally in Meeker on April 27, collected 50 percent more pills nationally than in 2012.
The outcome, according to the DEA, demonstrates the American public’s continued appreciation and need for the opportunity to discard unwanted, unused and expired prescription drugs from medicine cabinets, bedside tables and kitchen drawers.
On April 27, 742,497 pounds (371 tons) of prescription medications were collected from members of the public at more than 5,829 locations manned by 4,312 state, local and tribal law enforcement agencies that partnered with DEA on the event.
When added to the collections from DEA’s previous five Take-Back events, more than 2.8 million pounds (1,409 tons) of prescription medications have been removed from circulation.
In Colorado alone in 2013, more than 21,091 pounds were collected on Drug Take-Back Day, and a total of 86,128 pounds were collected in previous years.
Within the Denver Field Division, new records were set for the amount of prescription drugs collected in the division’s four states of Colorado, Montana, Utah and Wyoming.
The statistics below reveal how many pounds of drugs were collected this year and the total for the six events.
The National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day aims to provide a safe, convenient and responsible means of disposing of prescription drugs while also educating the general public about the potential for abuse of medications.
According to the 2011 Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), twice as many Americans regularly abused prescription drugs than the number of those who regularly used cocaine, hallucinogens, heroin and inhalants combined.
That same study revealed that more than 70 percent of people abusing prescription pain relievers obtained them through friends or relatives, a statistic that includes raiding the family medicine cabinet.