Newaygo County Medication Take-Back Events April 28th
According to the 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 6.4 million Americans abused controlled prescription drugs. The study shows that a majority of abused prescription drugs were obtained from family and friends, often from the home medicine cabinet.
The Headway Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition, the Drug Enforcement Agency, Newaygo County Sheriff’s Office, and the Newaygo Police Department are partnering to host a medication collection event to help people safely dispose of unused and/or expired medications.
Medications can be dropped off Saturday, April 28th from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Newaygo County Sheriff’s Office in White Cloud or Hometown Pharmacy in Newaygo. This event is free and anonymous; people participating will not be asked any questions when dropping off medications.
Items that will be accepted include: prescription medications, over-the-counter medications, ointments, sprays, inhalers, creams, needles, and pet medications. Items that will not be accepted include: bio-hazardous materials and household hazardous waste.
Newaygo County also has permanent collection boxes available at all law enforcement agencies, Newaygo Hometown Pharmacy, TrueNorth Community Services, and Newaygo County Commission on Aging. At these locations, medications can be dropped off during business hours. Since these collection boxes started in 2014, 3,285 pounds of medication have been collected in Newaygo County.
The take back events and permanent collection boxes aim to address prescription drug abuse. Local survey data reveals that 47% of youth who have abuse medication in the past 30 days obtain the medication from their parents or grandparents medicine cabinets (SYS, 2016).
“Unused or expired medications can cause several problems, one being medications that are flushed down the toilet or thrown into the garbage can and do find their way into our water systems. Second, medications lying around can find their way into children’s hands which can and have led to deadly consequences,” says Undersheriff Chad Palmiter.
The event coincides with the DEA National Take Back Day, which is sponsored by the DEA to collect unused controlled substances. For more information about the disposal of prescription drugs or about the April 28th Take Back Day event, go to the DEA Diversion website.