By Maria- Paula
Another National Prescription Drug Take Back Day is quickly approaching on Saturday, October 23, 2021 from 10 am to 2 pm.
The event which aligns with the Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) mission, will roll out at several location across the state, including seven HCA hospitals, including Chippenham, Henrico Doctors’, John Randolph, Johnston-Willis, Parham Doctors’, Retreat Doctors’, and Spotsylvania Regional Medical Center.
With more than 70,630 deaths attributed to drug overdoses in 2019, opioid addiction was labelled a national health crisis by statistics from the Center for Disease Control (CDC). A significant number of the opioid crisis addictions and overdose deaths came from individuals accessing unused opioids prescriptions of family and friends. The misperception among the youth that prescription drugs are less harmful than other medications was driven by the fact that teens who misused pain relievers report that they easily got them from their home’s medicine cabinets.
In October 2020, 13,523 pounds of unused and expired prescription medications from 95 HCA healthcare facilities in 18 states were collected at “Crush the Crisis” events countrywide.
“Crush the Crisis” take back day is a bi-annual event that takes place in April and October each year with focus on raising awareness and educating our community about the potential dangers of opioid misuse after previous medical procedures and visits while providing convenient disposal of medication. Community members are hence invited to safely and anonymously get rid of unused or expired prescription medications by ensuring that prescription drugs are not used in an unsafe manner.
Although tablets, capsules and patches of Hydrocodone (Norco, Lortab, Vicodin) Fentanyl ( Duragesic), Oxycodone (Oxycontin, Percocet), Morphine, Tramadol (Ultram), Codeine, Hydromorphone (Dilaudid) and Oxymorphone (Opana) will be collected by the authorized personel, needles, syringes, inhalers, liquids and lancets will not be part of medications accepted for collection.
If you miss the DEA’s Prescription Drug Take Back Day, you can make use of a nationwide search tool to locate a year-round drug disposal collection center near you which is not limited to safely disposing the said drugs at home.
All COVID-19 safety rules will be in place at the event, including masking, and social distancing as locallawenforcementagentstogetherwithVirginia hospitals doctors, nurses, and staff members invite Virginia residents to securely dispose of unused medications.