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National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day, Saturday, October 22, 2016

Friday, October 14, 2016
From: 
Chuck Rosenberg, Acting Administrator, Drug Enforcement Administration
Beth F. Cobert, Acting Director, Office of Personnel Management
Michael P. Botticelli, Director, National Drug Control Policy

The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) in partnership with the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, and the Office of National Drug Control Policy, urges all Federal employees to participate in the National Prescription Drug “Take-Back” Day on Saturday, October 22, 2016, from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.  Individuals wishing to dispose of their medications can find a collection location at: www.DEAdiversion.usdoj.gov/drug_disposal/takeback.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has declared prescription drug abuse and its consequences an epidemic, with more people dying from drug overdoses, primarily driven by prescription drug abuse, than in motor vehicle crashes.  In 2014, 28,647 (61%) people died from overdoses involving some type of opioid, including heroin.  Additionally, a study in 2015 revealed that 60% of patients who were prescribed an opioid had leftovers that they were holding onto for future use, and one in five (20%) of these patients had shared their medication.  These statistics indicate the value of proper prescription drug disposal as a key strategy to preventing prescription drug abuse, and this strategy is therefore included in the Administration’s Prescription Drug Abuse Prevention Plan. 

Americans participating in the DEA’s eleventh National Prescription Drug “Take-Back” Day on April 30, 2016, turned in 893,498 pounds of unwanted or expired medications for safe and proper disposal at 5,359 take-back sites in all 50 states and U.S. territories.  This brought the total amount of drugs collected in five years to 6,471,708 pounds, or 3,236 tons. 

We encourage you to join this commitment to improving public health and safety by participating and inviting others – friends, family, and neighbors – to take part in the twelfth National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day on Saturday, October 22, 2016.