FAIRFIELD, Conn. -- Residents will have a chance to clean out their medicine cabinets and get rid of old or no longer used prescription pills during a Drug Take Back event on Saturday, April 30 hosted by the Fairfield Police Department and the Drug Enforcement Administration.
Being held for the sixth time in 11 years, the pill take back day gives the public a chance to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs.
The process is easy and anonymous, with no questions asked, police said. All residents have to do is take the medication to the Fairfield Police Department at 100 Reef Road and drop it off from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. DEA officials said they cannot accept liquids or needles or sharps, only pills or patches.
Last September, Americans turned in 350 tons -- over 702,000 pounds -- of prescription drugs at more than 5,000 sites operated by the DEA and more than 3,800 of its state and local law enforcement partners. Overall, the DEA and their partners have taken back 5.5 million pounds—more than 2,750 tons—of pills.
Police said the initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue, especially now when so many residents are suffering from opioid addiction. 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.
For more information about the disposal of prescription drugs, or about the April 30 Take Back Day event, go the Fairfield Police Department website at fpdct.com.
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