National Drug Take-Back Day Encourages Safe Disposal Of Unused Medications

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Unused medications for a lot of people often sit somewhere in their homes. There is a fear it will land in the wrong hands, or even cause death.

It’s the reason behind the DEA’s National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day and many people stepped up, and properly tossed out.

Tanya Brown is one of the many people in Baltimore dropping off what she no longer needs nor uses, bottles of old prescription medication.

“I thought it was important to get these old things out of my home and get them properly disposed of,” she says.

It’s a big push from the DEA’s Baltimore district office, where assistant special agent Don Hibbert, says we are in the midst of a serious epidemic.

“In 2015, 52,000 people died from an overdose, 33,000 of those were from opioids. That’s more that can fill the capacity of Camden Yards,” says Hibbert.

“When we think about commonly abused substances, we tend to think about: the heroine, cocaine, illegal drugs, but actually prescription and over the counter drugs are some of the most commonly abused substances in America,” says Dr. Leanna Wen, Baltimore City Commissioner of Health.

Public health and public safety work hand in hand, which is why the city police department is on board to help reduce a problem that is affecting everyone, from children to seniors.

“Far many more people in Baltimore are impacted by overdoses every year than by violence, believe it or not. It’s a responsibility we take very seriously at the police department,” says Baltimore City Police Commissioner Kevin Davis.

Nationally each day, there are 44 deaths from the misuse of prescription drugs. Disposing of the unused medication, both prescription and over the counter could save lives.

If you weren’t able to take your unused prescription drugs to a drop-off location, you can still properly dispose of them.

Any time of the year, you can drop those unused drugs off at a police station, no questions asked.

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