MIAMI, FL. – Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Miami Field Division Special Agent in Charge (SAC) Mark R. Trouville announced today that DEA Miami has partnered with Clear Channel Radio South Florida and Mobile Mike to promote this month’s National Prescription Drug Take Back Day. On Saturday, April 30, 2011, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Mobile Mike will broadcast live from a DEA collection site in the parking lot of Westfield Mall (formerly Broward Mall), located at the intersection of University Drive and Broward Boulevard in Plantation, Florida. This site is one of over 215 in Florida. The service is free and anonymous, no questions asked.
Last September, Americans turned in over 242,000 pounds—121 tons—of prescription drugs at nearly 4,100 sites operated by more than 3,000 of the DEA’s state and local law enforcement partners. In Florida, 4 ½ tons of prescription drugs were collected from over 140 sites. The collected drugs were safely disposed at the following four sites in Florida: Miami-Fort Lauderdale area - 1 ½ tons, Orlando – 1 ½ tons, Tampa – ½ ton, and Tallahassee – 1 ton.
DEA hopes to collect even more this spring by opening the event to long term care facilities.
“This is a very important event that can help make our homes, communities, and environments safer” said SAC Trouville. “I would encourage all Floridians to check their medicine cabinets for unused or expired prescription drugs and go to www.DEA.gov to find the site closest to them.”
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 -- more Americans currently abuse prescription drugs than the number of those using cocaine, hallucinogens, and heroin combined, according to the 2009 National Survey on Drug Use and Health. Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet.