Harrisonburg, Augusta County hosting National Prescription Drug Take Back Day events on Saturday
The Harrisonburg Police Department and Augusta County Sheriff’s Office are taking part in National Prescription Drug Take Back Day with collection sites in the two localities on Saturday.
Harrisonburg Police will be receiving the medications at two separate locations: the Roses parking lot at 450 N. Mason St. and the DICK’s Sporting Goods parking lot, located at 1925 E Market St.
The Augusta County Sheriff’s Office is hosting a collection site at the sheriff’s office.
All three collection sites will be open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday.
The sheriff’s office has a secure drop box in the lobby area that is available for citizens to safely dispose of unused or unwanted prescription medications that is accessible 24 hours per day.
The project is an initiative of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration. At its last Take Back Day in October, DEA collected a record-high amount of expired, unwanted and unused prescription medications, with the public turning in close to 500 tons of unwanted drugs.
Over the 10-year span of Take Back Day, DEA has brought in more than 6,800 tons of prescription drugs. With studies indicating a majority of abused prescription drugs come from family and friends, including from home medicine cabinets, clearing out unused medicine is essential.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the U.S. has seen an increase in overdose deaths during the COVID-19 pandemic, with 83,544 Americans overdosing during the 12-month period ending July 1, 2020, the most ever recorded in a 12-month period.
The increase in drug overdose deaths appeared to begin prior to the COVID-19 health emergency, but accelerated significantly during the first months of the pandemic.
DEA and its partners will collect tablets, capsules, patches, and other solid forms of prescription drugs. Liquids (including intravenous solutions), syringes and other sharps, and illegal drugs will not be accepted.
DEA will continue to accept vaping devices and cartridges at its drop off locations provided lithium batteries are removed. Helping people dispose of potentially harmful prescription drugs is just one way DEA is working to reduce addiction and stem overdose deaths.
Learn more about the event at www.deatakeback.com, or by calling 800-882-9539.