By Ed Coghlan.
The Drug Enforcement Administration and its national, tribal, and community partners will hold the 15th National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day across the country on Saturday, April 28th. The service is free and anonymous.
The DEA has collected more than 9 million pounds (4,500 tons) of expired, unused and unwanted prescription medications at 14 previous events over the past 7 years,
This weekend more than 5,600 collection sites manned by almost 4,500 partner law enforcement agencies will be open 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. local time.
“Take Back Day helps to keep drugs out of the hands of abusers and potentially save lives by removing unused painkillers and controlled drugs from homes,” said DEA Acting Administrator Robert W. Patterson. “The more unused painkillers or controlled drugs we can help to remove from homes, the more potential lives will be saved. The home medicine cabinet is a frequent target of prescription drug abusers and often provides access to prescription medication. We need the help of the public to dispose of this unwanted source of abuse. Take Back Day is an effective tool for addressing the opioid crisis in America.”
DEA launched its prescription drug take back program when both the Environmental Protection Agency and the Food and Drug Administration advised the public that flushing these drugs down the toilet or throwing them in the trash posed potential safety and health hazards.
Last fall the public turned in 456 tons (912,000 pounds) of prescription drugs at more than 5,300 sites operated by the DEA and more than 4,200 of its local and tribal partners.
The National Pain Report reported the DEA is taking public comment on its desire to put production quotas on manufacturers of opioid pain medication. The comment period ends on May 4th. To leave a comment, click here.
Earlier this month, the DEA announced it has reached an agreement with Attorneys General from 46 states, Puerto Rico, and the District of Columbia to share prescription drug information with one another in order to aid investigations. DEA’s Automation of Reports and Consolidated Orders System (ARCOS) system collects some 80 million transaction reports every year from manufacturers and distributors of prescription drugs.
Last month, the DEA said it will add 250 task force officers and dozens of additional analysts to areas across America where the opioid crisis is at its worst. DEA task forces act as a force multiplier in carrying out DEA’s mission through coordination and cooperation with federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies in the U.S.