Thursday, April 21, 2011

TOP STORY > >Safely dispose of prescription drugs during nationwide ‘Drug Take Back’

On April 30, Arkansas will hold its second statewide Prescription Drug Take Back Day as part of a national effort by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration. Arkansans can bring their used, expired and unwanted household drugs to take back sites around the state from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. for proper disposal. Some sites will offer extended hours. The service is free and anonymous with no questions asked. More than 100 law enforcement agencies across Arkansas will participate in the one-day event.

This initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue. Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to theft, misuse and abuse. Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are alarmingly high – more Americans abuse prescription drugs than use cocaine, hallucinogens and heroin combined.

According to the 2010 Arkansas Prevention Needs Assessment Survey, close to one in five Arkansas high school students have abused prescription drugs by the time they reach their senior year. Nationally, more than seven in ten teens who report abusing prescription medications indicate they obtain these substances from family or friends. Three in five teens report that prescription medicine is easy to obtain directly from their parents’ medicine cabinets.

Arkansas participated in the first DEA Prescription Take Back Day September 2010. More than two-and-a-half tons of drugs –approximately seven to nine million pills – were collected at the first event.

For more information on National Prescription Drug Take Back Day in Arkansas or for additional takeback sites, please visit or

Anyone interested in participating can find more information and a complete list of collection sites at

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