April 23, 2019
Contact: Special Agent Sharon Santiago
Phone Number: (312) 353-0442
DEA and partners hold National Prescription Drug Take Back Day on April 27, 2019
CHICAGO – With robust public participation over the course of 16 prior events, the National Prescription Drug Take Back Day Initiative continues to remove ever-higher amounts of opioids and other medicines from the nation’s homes, where they are vulnerable to misuse, theft or abuse by family members and visitors, including children and teens. In continuation of this effort, DEA and its national, tribal and community partners will hold the 17th National Prescription Drug Take Back Day across the country on Saturday, April 27. The service is free and anonymous.
Now in its ninth year, DEA has collected a total of nearly 11 million pounds (more than 5,400 tons) of expired, unused and unwanted prescription medications through its Take Back Day events. This weekend, approximately 6,000 collection sites manned by nearly 5,000 partner law enforcement agencies will be open 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. local time. The public can find a nearby collection site at www.DEATakeBack.com or by calling 800-882-9539. (DEA cannot accept liquids, needles or sharps.)
"Addiction causes a tremendous amount of pain and suffering, not just for those addicted to drugs, but also for their families and friends," said Acting Administrator Uttam Dhillon. "Helping people keep their loved ones safe by disposing of unwanted, unused, and expired prescription medications is just one of many ways that DEA is working to break the cycle of addiction and overdose deaths plaguing this country."
Rates of prescription drug abuse in the United States continue to be alarmingly high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs. The majority of prescription drug abusers say they get their drugs free from friends and family, including from the home medicine cabinet. Take Back Day is a unique opportunity for Americans to protect their homes and medicine cabinets from theft and abuse.
National Take Back Day has received enthusiastic public support since its inception in 2010. Last October, the public turned in 457 tons (914,236 pounds) of prescription drugs at more than 5,800 sites operated by the DEA and nearly 4,800 of its local and tribal partners.