The drug overdose epidemic in the United States is a clear and present public health, public safety, and national security threat. DEA’s National Prescription Drug Take Back Day reflects DEA’s commitment to Americans’ safety and health, encouraging the public to remove unneeded medications from their homes as a measure of preventing medication misuse and opioid addiction from ever starting.

DEA is committed to making our communities safer and healthier, and we can do this by reducing overdoses and overdose deaths. While the community does its part to turn in unneeded medications and remove them from potential harm, we are doing our part to further reduce drug-related violence.

On this webpage are resources to help you dispose of unneeded medications in your home, seek treatment for a substance use disorder and learn more about the drug overdose epidemic in the United States.

Collection Site Locator

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DEA National Rx Takeback

Too often, unused prescription drugs find their way into the wrong hands. That's dangerous and often tragic. That's why it was great to see thousands of folks from across the country clean out their medicine cabinets and turn in - safely and anonymously - a record amount of prescription drugs.

Take-Back Day Poster 2

National Take Back Day Results

  • Total Law Enforcement Participation: 4,770
  • Total Collection Sites: 5,839
  • Total Weight Collected: 914,236 lbs.  (457.12 Tons)

Click here for additional details about the 16th National Take Back Day.

  • Total Law Enforcement Participation: 4,683
  • Total Collection Sites: 5,842
  • Total Weight Collected: 949,046 lbs. (474.5 Tons)

Click here for additional details about the 15th National Take Back Day.

Results: April 2016 11th National Take Back

  • Total Law Enforcement Participation: 4,264
  • Total Collection Sites: 5,359
  • Total Weight Collected: 893,498 lbs. (447 Tons)

Click here for additional details about the 11th National Take Back Day.


Results: October 2016 12th National Take Back

Medication-Assisted Treatment

Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT) is the use of medications, in combination with counseling and behavioral therapies, to provide a “whole-patient” approach to the treatment of substance use disorders. Research shows that a combination of medication and therapy can can help some people struggling with addiction sustain recovery.  Treatment should include access to the MAT options of methadone, buprenorphine, or extended-release naltrexone, which are effective for both prescription opioid and heroin addiction. 

Doctor in consultation with a patient


Narcan nasal spray product photo

Naloxone is an opioid receptor antagonist that rapidly binds to opioid receptors, blocking opioids from activating them. An appropriate dose of naloxone acts in less than two minutes and completely eliminates all signs of opioid intoxication to reverse an opioid overdose. Narcan can be used on both adults and children and can be administered by first responders, family members, or caregivers.