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NEWS | April 16, 2019

Drug Take Back Day at JB Charleston aims to prevent abuse

Joint Base Charleston Public Affairs

Got drugs? 

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency and Joint Base Charleston’s law enforcement agencies, along with the Drug Demand Reduction Program, will partner to provide the community an opportunity to help prevent pill abuse by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous, expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs. 

Members of JB Charleston can bring their unused or expired prescription pills for disposal to the Air Base BX or the Naval Weapons Station NEX on April 27, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Event coordinators say they cannot accept liquids, needles/sharps, but they will accept pills and patches. The service is free and anonymous, no questions asked.

This initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue. Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse and abuse. Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs.  Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet. Further, misuse of prescription drugs by military members and civilian employees can lead to administrative or legal problems.

In addition, Americans are now advised that their usual methods for disposing of unused medicines—flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash—both pose potential safety and health hazards.

Last year, the DEA and its partners collected over 457 tons of prescription drugs from 4,770 sites operated by the DEA and their thousands of state and local law enforcement agency partners.  JB Charleston law enforcement agencies and DDRP have partnered with the DEA since 2011, conducting Prescription Take Backs biannually, contributing to the tons of prescription drugs collected each year in the U.S.

There will be information and giveaways at both locations during the Prescription Drug Take Back Day. For more information, contact Carole Lampkin-Harris, Drug Testing Program Admin Manager, at 963-6514/6849.