April 27, 2012

Take-Back Initiative aims to curb, educate on prescription pill abuse

Law enforcement agencies around the country are coming together Saturday, April 28, to help collect old prescription drugs in an effort to curb drug abuse and educate the public on its dangers.

It’s the fourth annual National Take-Back Initiative.

Sponsored by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency, the National Take-Back Initiative will have more than 5,000 locations across the U.S. Saturday to collect prescription medications that citizens no longer use or need.

Officials and data from the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) this week both say prescription drug abuse continues to rise in the U.S. And those misusing medications are usually getting them from friends or family members.

In the data, the ONDCP found that the majority of first-time or occasional prescription drug abusers are most likely to get their drugs from a friend or family member—free, or without permission. 

Among new abusers of pain relievers (those who began misuse of pain relievers in the past year), 68 percent obtained the pills from a friend or relative for free or took them without asking, 17 percent got them through prescription by one or more doctors, and 9 percent purchased them from a friend, dealer or the Internet.

During the National Take-Back Initiative, to find a disposable site, visit the site locator online.

According to a media release, in its three previous Take Back events, DEA and its partners took in almost a million pounds-nearly 500 tons-of pills.     


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