National Prescription Drug Take Back Day: October 27, 2018
Saturday, October 27, 2018, Texas Collection Sites for National RX Take Back Day:
The United States Drug Enforcement Agency’s National Prescription Drug Take Back Day is this Saturday, (10/27/18). It has been set aside for the safe, convenient disposal of unused, expired or unwanted prescription drugs. On the DEA’s website, you will find a list of Texas collection facilities available to the public on this Saturday, October 27, 2018.
The Centers for Disease Control released troublesome data concerning the drug overdose epidemic that is sweeping the nation. As such, the time to be concerned with how our prescription drugs are being misused and abused is now. The CDC reports that over 72,000 people died in the US from a drug overdose in 2017. This is added to the total of 630,000 people who have died from a drug overdose between 1999 and 2016 in the United States alone. This means that in a little less than 2 decades, when prescription opioids began marketing heavily in the US, we have seen 700,000 fellow Americans succumb to the perils of substance abuse.
This is a huge problem that only seems to be getting worse. In the health care market, doctors currently prescribe around 58.5 opioid prescriptions per 100 people. While opioid prescription rates are currently in decline, the problem of misuse of prescription drugs is persistent and the health risks for our society are very dangerous. It is estimated that currently, 6.2 million Americans are misusing controlled prescription drugs. The CDC’s study also concludes that most of these drugs are obtained from family or friends by raiding their home medicine cabinets.
The DEA’s National Take Back Day is aimed at lowering the exposure rate of these potentially deadly prescription medications. This initiative is hoping to help lower the already high drug overdose death rates. These drugs find their way into the wrong hands much too often and this is a dangerous combination for your community. The National Take Back Day is a way for you to anonymously and confidentially turn in your unwanted and unused prescription drugs. This presents a wonderful opportunity to clean out your home medicine cabinets. Take them to the closest collection location, and you'll know that your old medications are going to be disposed of safely and securely.
Know the facts about prescription pharmaceutical drugs before you throw them in the trash:
- Pharmaceutical drugs can be just as dangerous as illicit street drugs when taken without a prescription or a medical doctor’s supervision.
- Unused and expired pharmaceutical drugs are a serious public health concern. Improper disposal of medications can easily lead to misuse, abuse, accidental poisoning and even overdose deaths.
- The majority of teenagers in the United States who abuse prescription drugs, get them from the medicine cabinets of their own home, or the homes of family members and close friends.
- Non-medical use of pharmaceutical drugs is the most commonly misused or abused substance, second only to marijuana.
- Throwing prescriptions away in the trash is an easy way for people to retrieve them and put them up for sale on the streets of your local community.
- Flushing your unused medication down the toilet is also a bad idea as it can contaminate your city’s local water supply, rivers and streams. Proper disposal can help protect the environment and ultimately save peoples’ lives.
The DEA held a prior Take Back Day in April of 2018. Over 5,000 collection sites were available nationwide and they safely removed and disposed 474.5 tons of unused prescription drugs. As the trend continues it looks like the agency will be holding these events bi-annually happening in the spring and fall of each year.