By Cass Rains, Staff Writer
Enid News and Eagle
ENID, Okla. —
A National Drug Take Back Day has been scheduled by the Drug Enforcement Administration for Saturday, to allow the public to dispose of unwanted or unused medications.
The 71st Medical Group Pharmacy at Vance Air Force Base has teamed with the 71st Flying Training Wing Drug Demand Reduction Office, Garfield County Drug and Alcohol Coalition and local law enforcement personnel to give people an opportunity to rid their homes of potentially dangerous, expired, unused and unwanted medications.
Collection points will be set up 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Enid Home Show inside Chisholm Trail Expo Center. The service is free, anonymous and no questions will be asked.
This is the first time this service has been provided in conjunction with Enid Home Show, which will have more than 350 vendors. There will be two locations: one booth will be Enid Police Department — Booth A-108 (Coliseum) — and the second will be with Garfield County Sheriff’s Department — Booth D-3 (Leisure Living).
“This initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue,” said Dena Patterson, with Enid PreventionWorkz.
“Medicines that accumulate in home medicine cabinets are at risk for diversion, misuse and abuse,” she said. “Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are alarmingly high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to stockpiles of medications in the home.”
Studies show a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet. In addition, Americans are advised their usual methods for disposing of unused medicines by flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash both pose potential safety and health hazards.
Patterson said of the 77 counties in Oklahoma, the current data ranks Garfield County as the 28th in deaths from prescription drug abuse.
In 2010 Congress passed the Secure and Responsible Drug Disposal Act of 2010, which amended the Controlled Substances Act of 1970, to allow an “ultimate user” of controlled substance medications to dispose of them by delivering them to events like this.