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National Prescription Take Back Day Is April 22
Do you have unused medications in your home? Maybe you didn’t finish a prescription, or you have meds that expired, or you have something you just don’t take anymore; it is easy to stash these in a cupboard or drawer and forget about them. Medications have the potential to be dangerous and even deadly! The drug overdose epidemic in the United States is a serious public health concern. Saturday, April 22, 2023, is the DEA National Prescription Drug Take Back Day. On this day, the public is encouraged to remove unneeded medication from their homes. Opioid addiction, overdose (accidental or intentional), and overdose complications are all very real issues plaguing the health and safety levels of our communities.
When unused prescriptions, especially pain relievers, fall into the wrong hands (by being lost, stolen, or misused) the scenario can be dangerous or even deadly. Since 2019, preventable drug overdose deaths in the US have increased 58%, including suicide, homicide, and undetermined death. The CDC reports that in 2022 in Nebraska, the death rate by overdose was 11.4 per 100,000 lives lost. These lives lost were 100% preventable. We need to do what we can to prevent such tragic losses.
In Nebraska, many pharmacies have permanent take-back procedures that encourage the safe disposal of unused and leftover medications. See the links below to find these locations as well as the sites participating in the DEA’s “no questions asked” sites for safe disposal. The sites are often:
- Police departments
- Pharmacies, including independent and chains
- Fire stations
- Municipal buildings
So this Saturday, 4/22/2023, do some spring cleaning of your medication cabinet and, as the DEA promotes: Keep them safe. Clean them out. Take them back.
To find a participating drop-off location visit: https://www.DEATakeBack.com
To view a list of participating pharmacies visit: https://ago.nebraska.gov/news/every-day-drug-take-back-day-nebraska
Colleen Eusterwiemann, Suicide Pre & Postvention Coordinator for
The Kim Foundation
Colleen earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology and Sociology from Northwest Missouri State University and her Master’s Degree in Public Administration from the University of Nebraska at Omaha. Colleen has previous experience working for local non-profits focusing on consulting, coordinating, planning, and providing direct care. Colleen joined The Kim Foundation in January of 2022.