‘Drug Take Back Day’ Proves To Be A Major Success
This past October, the Drug Enforcement Association (or DEA) implemented its annual anti-addiction initiative titled National Drug Take Back Day. Its purpose is to encourage anyone with excess prescription meds to safely, anonymously and properly dispose of pills that are no longer needed. And, according to some newly released stats, it has become extremely successful; accounting for over 5,000 tons of drugs getting out of the wrong hands.
As we’ve mentioned in previous blogs, dangerous drugs in the home can have a major ripple effect. There are examples of toddlers accidentally overdosing on pills, teen addictions forming and even thievery; where meds end up sold on the street. Removing all unnecessary medications is a fantastic movement and one that can put a legitimate dent in the country’s growing dependency problems.
The way this program has worked in years’ past involves safe disposal sites across major U.S. cities. Once collected, the drugs are transported by The National Guard to trash facilities where they are burned at more than 2,000 degrees. DEA officials are involved in this process too, monitoring the day’s events from start to finish.
This method is much more effective than the way excess meds are traditionally disposed of. Throwing them in your trash could still lead to risks, as there is no guarantee that they reach any sort of incinerator. Flushing drugs down the toilet is also not foolproof, as explained by DEA corporate communications rep James Regan.
“This important event allows the public the opportunity to contribute to the solution and offers a safe way to dispose of expired or unused prescription drugs that can pose a threat to others,” Regan told local outlets. “Years ago, people were told if you have medications in your home, flush them down the drain, and we found waste water treatment facilities can’t really get those pharmaceuticals and medications out of the water properly. So by bringing it here instead, we’re able to destroy that material and keep it out of the waste water.”
Interestingly enough, many other high profile names have also associated themselves with this movement. National Take Back Day now has an extensive website and several Public Service Announcements featuring celebrity recovery advocates. You can see Pat Monahan’s below. We definitely agree that it is a great cause and one that deserves a large amount of attention.