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Drug Take-Back Day offers chance to clean out medicine cabinets

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drug drop-off box

Delaware will host a Drug Take-Back Day on Saturday between 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. at locations throughout the state. The Department of Health and Social Service (DHSS) and the federal Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) organized the effort as a way to keep excess prescription drugs from being misused or dumped into the waste stream.

The state has 21 permanent medicine drop-off locations. Six are located inside Walgreens pharmacies, the first private Delaware retailer to install the drop-off boxes. The rest have been placed inside local enforcement buildings.

“We must view addiction as the chronic disease it is. We can all improve the safety of our homes and communities by properly disposing of unused medicines,” said DHSS Secretary Dr. Kara Odom Walker. “National studies show that almost two-thirds of people who misuse prescription drugs get them from friends and family, including by raiding medicine cabinets, purses, and drawers.

Drug overdoses rose from 228 in 2015 to 308 in 2016. Up to 80 percent of those overdoses may involve one or more prescription drugs.

Take-Back events happen twice a year and so far have collected 65,000 pounds of medication.

From the press release:

Drugs for disposal must be in a container such as a pill bottle, box, blister pack, or zipped plastic bag, with personal information removed. Liquid medications must be in their original containers. Needles, aerosols, biohazard materials, medical equipment, and batteries will not be accepted. For more details and a list of permanent collection sites, visit DPH at http://dhss.delaware.gov/dph/hsp/hhdrugtakeback.html or 302-744-4546, ext. 5; and the DEA atwww.dea.gov/take-back/takeback-news.shtml.


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