By: Michael Campbell | Twitter: @itsthesoup
Posted: Oct. 27, 2017 | 12:00 p.m.
PRINCE GEORGE – On Saturday, October 28, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. the Virginia State Police and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) will give the public its 14th opportunity in seven years to participate in the National Drug Take-Back Initiative to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs.
The Virginia State Police are hosting sites at Division Headquarters across the state. You can bring your pills for disposal to a collection site near you.
In Prince George, the county police department is hosting a disposal site at the department in the side parking lot from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at 6600 Courthouse Road.
For those living outside the county, simply go to the DEA website by clicking here to find a site near you or learn more about Saturday’s event. You can search by zip code for a collection site near you. (The DEA cannot accept liquids or needles or sharps, only pills or patches.) The service is free and anonymous, no questions asked.
Last April, Americans turned in 450 tons (900,000 pounds) of prescription drugs at almost 5,500 sites operated by the DEA and more than 4,200 of its state and local law enforcement partners. Overall, in its 13 previous Take Back events, DEA and its partners have taken in over 8.1 million pounds more than 4,050 tons of pills.
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 abuse in the U.S. are alarmingly high, as are the number 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 their usual methods for disposing of unused medicines, flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash both pose potential safety and health hazards.