Dale Woolery, at the Governor’s Office of Drug Control Policy, says Saturday (10/29) is National Drug Take-Back Day and more than four dozen Iowa locations are taking part.
Woolery says, “The main reason for properly and safely disposing of prescription drugs at these types of take-back events is to make sure these medicines that are no longer needed — they may be outdated, they may simply be unused — are removed from medicine cabinets and from other places where the wrong people might get into them, either accidentally or intentionally.”
Saturday offers a great opportunity to clean out the medicine cabinet, Woolery says, and safely eliminate a potential problem.
“More than 70% of those prescription medicines that are being abused are gotten from friends or relatives and a lot of that is coming out of the home medicine cabinet,” Woolery says.
“Prescription drug abuse is the nation’s fastest-growing type of substance abuse and it’s also a fast-growing problem here in Iowa.” A study finds drug overdose deaths involving prescription painkillers in Iowa have increased more than 12-hundred-percent in the last decade, from three cases in 2000 to 40 cases in 2009. He says it’s easy to take part in the Drug Take-Back event.
“There are 54 different sites in communities around Iowa this Saturday that will be operational from about 10 A.M. to 2 P.M. in most locations where any Iowan can, no questions asked, take any of these unneeded or unused prescription medicines in and drop them off,” Woolery says. “They will take them from you and properly dispose of them.”
The 2010 Iowa Youth Survey reported 7% of the state’s 11th graders surveyed said they had abused prescription drugs. To find a collection site near you and the exact hours of operation, visit: “www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/drug_disposal/takeback“.