From 10 am to 2 pm, Saturday, April 28, law enforcement agencies across the state will partner with the US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to give Missourians the opportunity to discard expired, unused or unwanted prescription drugs.
Locally, the drugs will be accepted at Maryville Public Safety. For more information, contact Officer Wilson at 660.562.3209. The DEA cannot accept liquids or needles or sharps, only pills or patches. The service is free and anonymous, with no questions asked.
Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services Director Dr. Randall Williams stresses the importance of this event. “National Drug Take Back Day is a fantastic opportunity for Missourians to clean out their medicine cabinets and discard old or unwanted medicines. It might seem like a small thing, but getting rid of these drugs could end up saving a life. Nearly 80 percent of Americans using heroin reported misusing prescription drugs first and it’s only about five years from when a person who’s misusing prescription drugs moves on to heroin. We must take every step we can to stop this from happening.”
This initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue. Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse and abuse. Rates of prescription drug misuse in the US are alarmingly high, as are the numbers of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs.
Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet. In addition, Americans are now advised that other methods for disposing of unused medicines, for example flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash, pose potential safety and health hazards.
Information on Missouri’s efforts to combat the opioid crisis can also be found by using the tag #MoFightsOpioids on social media.