HRH TAKING BACK UNWANTED PRESCRIPTION DRUGS SEPTEMBER 29
September 04, 2012
On September 29 from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm Holy Rosary Healthcare (HRH) will host a Prescription Drug Take-Back Program. This event gives the public an opportunity to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs. The public can bring their medications for disposal to the HRH main lobby at 2600 Wilson Street for collection by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). The service is free and anonymous, no questions asked. HRH will be hosting this event in cooperation with the Eastern Montana Drug Task Force, Montana Division of Criminal Investigation, and the DEA, which is the hosting organization of the Prescription Drug Take-Back Program.
Last April, Americans turned in 552,161 pounds—276 tons—of prescription drugs at over 5,600 sites operated by the DEA and nearly 4,300 state and local law enforcement partners. In its four previous Take Back events, DEA and its partners took in over 1.5 million pounds—nearly 775 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.
Four days after the first event, Congress passed the Secure and Responsible Drug Disposal Act of 2010, which amends the Controlled Substances Act to allow an "ultimate user" of controlled substance medications to dispose of them by delivering them to entities authorized by the Attorney General to accept them. The Act also allows the Attorney General to authorize long term care facilities to dispose of their residents' controlled substances in certain instances. DEA is drafting regulations to implement the Act. Until new regulations are in place, local law enforcement agencies like Eastern Montana Drug Task Force and Montana Division of Criminal Investigation along with the DEA will continue to hold prescription drug take-back events every few months.