Pharmacy students to participate in national prescription drug take back event

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San Jacinto College pharmacy students will participate in the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA)’s seventh annual National Prescription Drug Take Back Day on Saturday, Oct. 26.

National Prescription Drug Take Back Day aims to provide a safe, convenient, and responsible means of unused or expired prescription medication disposal, while also educating the general public about the potential for abuse of these medications.

“Currently twice as many Americans abuse prescription drugs than the number of those who abuse cocaine, hallucinogens, heroin, and inhalants combined,” said Dr. Alexander Okwonna, San Jacinto College dean of natural and health sciences. “Many people abusing prescription pain relievers get them raiding medicine cabinets of friends or relatives. National Prescription Drug Take Back Day helps to reduce prescription drug abuse and diversion.”

The last National Prescription Drug Take Back Day event in April saw 371 tons of prescription medications collected from members of the public at more than 5,829 locations manned by 4,312 participating state, local, and tribal law enforcement agencies. To date, the Take Back events have removed more than 2.8 million pounds (1,409 tons) of prescription medications from circulation.

San Jacinto College pharmacy students will be collecting unused and expired prescription and over-the-counter solid dosage medications on Saturday, Oct. 26 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Clear Lake Sub-Station (Court #19) located at 2855 Bay Area Boulevard in Houston. The event is free and open to the public. All medication information will be kept anonymous. Blank labels will also be provided for privacy security. For more information on National Prescription Drug Take Back Day or to find a collection site near you, visit http://www.dea.gov or call 800-882-9539.