DEA Chicago Division Take Back safely disposed of a record 155,000 pounds of unwanted prescription drugs
CHICAGO – Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Special Agent in Charge Robert J. Bell, Chicago Division, announced the success of DEA’s 19th National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, which occurred on October 24, 2020. The DEA Chicago Division with its state, local and tribal partners safely disposed of a record 155,000 pounds of unwanted and unused prescription drugs across Illinois, Wisconsin and Indiana.
DEA is encouraged by the public’s willingness to clean out their medicine cabinets and keep prescription medications safe and out of reach of children and others in households during this unprecedented time. DEA’s National Prescription Drug Take Back Day is now in its tenth year.
“Rates of prescription drug misuse in the United States are alarmingly high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs,” said Special Agent in Charge Robert Bell. Studies show that a majority of misused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from home medicine cabinets.
DEA, along with its law enforcement partners, has now collected nearly 13.7 million pounds of expired, unused, and unwanted prescription medications since the inception of the National Prescription Drug Take Back Initiative in 2010. On October 24, the public turned in 985,392 pounds – almost 493 tons – of medication to DEA and 4,153 of its community partners at 4,587 collection sites nationwide, including 33 Bureau of Indian Affairs sites.
“This year’s event, with a record-setting 493-ton collection, is a sure sign that DEA’s Take Back Day events continue to provide a vital public service that keeps loved ones safe - an opportunity to rid homes of potentially dangerous unused, expired, and unwanted medications,” said DEA Acting Administrator Timothy Shea. “Every day is Take Back Day and we encourage the public to continue to address this urgent safety and public health issue by using the thousands of existing drop-off locations throughout the year.”
In addition to DEA’s bi-annual National Prescription Drug Take Back, prescription drugs may be disposed of at any of the 11,000 DEA-authorized collection sites at any time throughout the year.
For more information, visit: https://apps2.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/pubdispsearch/spring/main?execution=e1s1.
DEA encourages the public to contact their local police department to learn where any permanent drug collection sites are located in their community.
For more information on DEA’s National Prescription Drug Take Back Initiative, and to find ways to properly dispose of medications, visit www.deatakeback.com.
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