National Prescription Drug Take Back Day to Remove Unneeded Prescriptions, Prevent Addiction
Anonymous disposal of unneeded medications at more than 4,000 locations
NEW ORLEANS – The Drug Enforcement Administration will host its 25th National Prescription Drug Take Back Day from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, October 28. The free event offers anonymous disposal of unneeded medications at more than 4,000 drop-off locations nationwide.
For more than a decade, Take Back Day has helped Americans easily rid their homes of unneeded medications—those that are old, unwanted, or expired. These medications can be a gateway to addiction and have helped fuel the opioid epidemic. A majority of people who use a prescription medication for a nonmedical purpose obtained it from a family member or friend, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).
“Prescription drugs often end up in the wrong hands, feeding an epidemic that kills more Americans than car accidents," said New Orleans Division Special Agent in Charge Brad L. Byerley. "DEA’s Take Back initiative provides citizens an easy and safe way to dispose of unused and unwanted prescription medications."
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates 107,735 American lives were lost to drug poisoning in the U.S. between August 2021 and August 2022.
DEA and its partners will collect tablets, capsules, patches, and other forms of prescription drugs. Collection sites will not accept syringes, sharps, or illicit drugs. Liquid products, such as cough syrup, should remain tightly sealed in their original container. The event will also continue to accept vaping devices and cartridges provided lithium batteries are removed.
A location finder and partner toolbox are available at www.DEATakeBack.com. Beyond DEA’s Take Back Day, there are also opportunities to regularly and safely dispose of unneeded medications at close to 15,000 pharmacies, hospitals, and businesses throughout the year. In addition, many police departments provide year-round drop boxes.