The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is again hosting a National Prescription Drug Take Back day at locations around the United States. To find the location closest to your home simple visit the www.takebackyourmeds.org website and type in your location here, they also have a Facebook page where you can learn more about the event.
Last year at 5550 take-back sites in all 50 states over 377,000 pounds of unwanted or expired medication was turned in for proper and safe disposal.
A survey done in conjunction with this years event revealed that over 57% of American adults dispose of their prescription medication improperly by throwing them out in the trash or flushing them down the toilet or drain. The survey also found that 35% of American adults said yes to having prescription medication in their home they are not using and 21% admitted to having expired medication. Over 84% of those that reported that had recently disposed of medication improperly did say in the survey that they would be willing to return medication to a pharmacy or local waste management program if they were better informed of how to go about it.
Safe disposal is important because it reduces drug abuse. A lot of prescription drug abuse amongst teens involves unwanted and forgotten about drugs that they take from family for use or resale. Proper disposal also reduces accidental poisoning. Over half of calls to poison control centres concern children who have taken prescription medication left improperly stored at home. Finally, safe disposal of medication reduces the harmful effects that it has the environment.