17 Tons Of Unwanted Prescription Drugs Turned In

Portland, Ore. – People in the Pacific Northwest (PNW) responded overwhelmingly to the most recent DEA National Prescription Drug Take Back Day. On September 26th, in a four hour period, residents of Washington, Oregon, Idaho and Alaska combined, turned in a record breaking 33,919 pounds (17 tons) of unwanted or expired medications for safe and proper disposal at the 171 take-back sites.

DEA Special Agent in Charge Keith Weis was extremely proud of the amazing response by the citizens of the Pacific Northwest region. Adding, “This outstanding participation is a true reflection of their deep concerns in keeping the unused pharmaceutical drugs from being abused by unintended users and disposed of in the most environmentally conscious way possible.”

When the results of the ten DEA Take Back Days for the PNW are combined, the DEA and its state, local, and tribal law-enforcement and community partners have removed over 268,456 pounds (134.2 tons) of medication from circulation.

* Washington – 19,320 pounds (9.6 tons) removed from circulation.
* Idaho – 2,899 pounds (1.4 tons) removed from circulation.
* Oregon – 8,934 pounds (4.5 tons) removed from circulation.
* Alaska – 2,766 pounds (1.3 tons) removed from circulation.

The National Prescription Drug Take-Back addresses a vital public safety and public health issue. Many Americans are not aware that medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse.

Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are at alarming rates, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs.

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