Sheriff Jeff Shaver and the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office will be participating in the DEA’s National Prescription Drug Take Back Program on Saturday, October 26th. The hours for collection will be 8:00 A.M. until 11:00 A.M. During that time period, Sheriff’s Office investigators will be at the Sheriff’s Office to accept expired, unused, or unneeded prescription pills. Those pills will then be turned over to the DEA for destruction.
Last fall Americans turned in nearly 460 tons (more than 900,000 pounds) of prescription drugs at more than 5,800 sites operated by the DEA and almost 4,800 sites operated by their state and local law enforcement partners. Overall, in its 16 previous Take Back events, DEA and its partners have taken in almost 11 million pounds-nearly 5,500 tons-of pills.
According to Chief Deputy Josh Summerford, 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 alarmingly high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s National Survey on Drug Use and Health shows year after year that the majority of misused and abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including someone else’s medication being stolen from the home medicine cabinet. 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. For more information about the disposal of prescription drugs or about the April 27 Take Back Day event, go to www.DEATakeBack.com.
Sheriff Shaver reminds everyone that the Sheriff’s Office will accept those unneeded prescription pills every day during normal business hours.