Drug Enforcement Administration


Robert J. Murphy, Jr., Special Agent in Charge

May 07, 2018

Contact: Chuvalo Truesdell

Phone Number: (571) 362-3517

DEA’S 15h Rx Drug Take Back Event Yields Fruitful Results In The Atlanta Field Division & State Of Tennessee

ATLANTA - On Saturday, April 28, 2018, in an effort to stem the tide of the prescription opioid crisis in America,  territories within the Atlanta Field (AFD) (Georgia, North & South Carolina) and the state of (formerly part of the AFD, now part of the Louisville Field Division), participated in DEA’s 15th National Rx Drug Take Back (NTBI). In doing so, the state of Georgia collected 9,633 pounds, which was the fourth highest total collected during the previous 14 NTBI events. The state of North Carolina amassed an impressive 29, 412 pounds. This amount was the highest total ever collected during the previous 14 NTBI events. The state of South Carolina “pulled-in” 8,502 pounds, the second highest total collected during the previous 14 NTBI events. The state of Tennessee collected a total of 20,590 pounds. This amount was the third highest total collected during the previous 14 NTBI events. All of the unneeded, unwanted or expired “meds” were turned in for safe and proper disposal at numerous sites set up throughout each state.

Now in its 9th year, this event continues to remove ever-higher amounts of opioids and other medicines from the nation’s homes, where they could be stolen and abused by family members and visitors, including children and teens.

“Robert J. Murphy, the Special Agent in (SAC) of the DEA Atlanta Field Division commented, “DEA’s 15th Prescription Drug Take-Back campaign was a huge success both locally and nationally. While Tennesseans turned in 20,590 pounds of unwanted or expired medications, nationally, a record setting amount of nearly 475 (close to one million pounds) of expired and unwanted prescription medications were collected in more than 6,000 sites made available across the United States. I would like to thank the multitude of (both law enforcement and non-law enforcement) who worked tirelessly to make this event another great success.”

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.

DEA launched its prescription drug take back program when both the Environmental Protection Agency and the Food and Drug Administration advised the public that their usual methods for disposing of unused medicines-flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash-posed potential safety and health hazards.

Helping people to dispose of potentially harmful prescription drugs is just one way DEA is working to reduce the addiction and overdose deaths plaguing this country due to opioid medications.

Complete results for DEA’s spring Take Back Day are available at www.deatakeback.com. DEA’s next Prescription Drug Take Back Day is October 27, 2018.

The DEA encourages parents, along with their children, to educate themselves about the dangers of legal and illegal drugs by visiting DEA’s interactive websites at www.justthinktwice.com, www.GetSmartAboutDrugs.com and www.dea.gov. Also follow DEA Atlanta via Twitter at @DEAATLANTADiv

DEA US Badge
United States Drug Enforcement Administration DEA.gov is an official site of the U.S. Department of Justice