Ohioans participate in National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day

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CUYAHOGA FALLS, Ohio (WJW) — The Drug Enforcement Administration held its 20th National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day on Saturday.

Many cities across the nation, including Cuyahoga Falls, hosted drug take-back events.

The goal of these events is to collect unused or expired medications from community members to help make the community safer.

“Ridding your home of expired and unused prescription drugs as part of National Drug Take-Back Day is an easy and convenient way to help keep your family safe,” Cuyahoga Falls Mayor Don Walters said in a press release. “I encourage all Cuyahoga Falls residents to protect their prescriptions from misuse and dispose of unused prescriptions safely.”

Free drug deactivation pouches were provided to citizens at the event for safe at-home disposal.

Residents who did not make it to Saturday’s event are encouraged to drop off unused and expired medication 24/7 at the drug disposal drop box located in the Cuyahoga Falls Police Department lobby. 

Members of other Northeast Ohio communities should contact their local authorities for their city’s drug take-back protocols.

According to the DEA, Take-Back Day has brought in more than 6,800 tons of prescription drugs over the past 10 years.

The organization says the majority of abused prescription drugs come from family and friends, including from home medicine cabinets, clearing out unused medicine is essential.

The DEA reports that, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the U.S. has seen an increase in overdose deaths during the COVID-19 pandemic. Officials say the increase in drug overdose deaths appeared to begin prior to the COVID-19 health emergency, accelerating significantly during the first months of the pandemic.

“It’s important to keep our own homes safe by regularly cleaning out medicine cabinets and any other areas where we store our pharmaceuticals,” Acting DEA Administrator D. Christopher Evans said in a press release. “Bringing unused or expired medications to a local collection site for safe disposal helps protect your loved ones and the environment.”

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