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Drug Enforcement Administration

New Jersey

Susan A. Gibson, Special Agent in Charge

December 15, 2020

Contact: Timothy P. McMahon

Phone Number: (973) 776-1143

DEA launches “Secure Your Meds” winter campaign

NEWARK, N.J. – As part of its continuing efforts to reduce drug misuse and overdose, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is launching a winter campaign urging the public to “Secure Your Meds.” The current health crisis has magnified the importance of addressing the issue of controlled prescription drug misuse. With Americans spending more time at home due to the pandemic, now is a good opportunity to clean out your medicine cabinets and secure unused medications. This one action can prevent medications from getting into the hands of children and others who may misuse them.

The goal of the Secure Your Meds campaign is to raise awareness of the responsibility to keep prescription and other medications stored securely. Medications that are no longer used or have reached their expiration date should be secured until they can be disposed of in one of the 11,000 authorized, year-round collection sites, or until the next DEA National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, when patients can dispose of unused medications properly at a DEA collection sites.

“The current pandemic has taken some of the focus away from the ongoing opioid epidemic,” said Special Agent in Charge of the DEA’s New Jersey Division Susan A. Gibson. “We want to remind the public of the importance of cleaning out your medicine cabinets or securing your prescription medications. These small actions can remove the temptation to experiment with prescription medications in the home.”

Medicines that languish in homes cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse and abuse. Rates of prescription drug abuse in the United States are alarmingly high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs. Studies show that a majority of abused and misused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from home medicine cabinets.

For more information on authorized collection sites, visit:https://apps2.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/pubdispsearch/spring/main?execution=e1s1

For information on safe at-home disposal, visit:

https://archive.epa.gov/region02/capp/web/pdf/ppcpflyer.pdf

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