The Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) National Prescription Drug Take Back Day addresses a crucial public safety and public health issue. Huntsville Police Department will be joining in the effort by collecting unused or expired prescription medication from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, April 27th, at Huntsville High School, 515 FM 2821.
Officers will be collecting and safely disposing of the medication in the front parking lot of the school. HPD Detective Ryann Kaaa-Bauer said citizens just need to drop off the medicine – there are no forms to fill out.
The DEA also has one disposal location in Huntsville – McNease Drugs, 103 B Medical Park Lane – that will accept controlled substances to be destroyed.
This initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue. Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse. Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are alarmingly high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs.
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s National Survey on Drug Use and Health shows year after year that most misused and abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including someone else’s medication being stolen from the home medicine cabinet. In addition, Americans are now advised that their usual methods for disposing of unused medicines—flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash—both pose potential safety and health hazards.
Huntsville Police Department was one of 288 departments in Texas participating in the nation-wide program, according to the Drug Enforcement Administration. Last spring Americans turned in nearly 475 tons (949,046 pounds) of prescription drugs at more than 5,800 sites operated by the DEA and almost 4,700 of its state and local law enforcement partners. Overall, in its 15 previous Take Back events, DEA and its partners have taken in almost 10 million pounds—nearly 5,000 tons—of pills.
For more information, contact Detective Kaaa-Bauer at RKaaa@HuntsvilleTX.gov or 936-291-5480.