On Saturday, April 24, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., the Kappa Psi Pharmaceutical Fraternity at Ferris State University, in collaboration with the Ferris Department of Public Safety and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, will host an event to dispose of potentially dangerous, expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs. Disposal of these items, organizers say, prevents pill abuse and theft. Community members are encouraged to bring their pills for disposal to the University Center Circle Drive entrance at 805 Campus Drive on Ferris’ Big Rapids campus. Take Back Day sites cannot accept liquids, needles or sharps, only pills or patches. Organizers add that this service is anonymous and free.
“The Ferris State University Department of Public Safety is proud to partner with the Kappa Psi Professional Pharmaceutical Fraternity for this year’s drug take-back day,” said John Allen, director of Ferris DPS. “This is a valuable program that allows citizens to turn in old or unneeded prescription medication. Without programs like this, prescription medications would get thrown away, flushed down the toilet, contaminating our water or, unfortunately, get into the hands of young children who often ingest the medicine.”
Last fall, according to the DEA, Americans turned in nearly 493 tons, more than 980,000 pounds, of prescription drugs at nearly 4,600 sites operated by the DEA and almost 4,200 of its state and local law enforcement partners.
This initiative is critical to public health and safety. Medicines left in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse and abuse. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s National Survey on Drug Use and Health shows annually that the most misused and abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including someone else’s medication stolen from a home medicine cabinet. As Allen noted, the usual methods for disposing of unused medicines, such as flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash, pose potential safety and health hazards. The DEA’s Take Back Day events are opportunities for Americans to prevent drug addiction and overdose deaths.
For more information about the disposal of prescription drugs or about the Saturday, April 24 Take Back Day event, go to www.DEATakeBack.com.