On Saturday, April 28, the National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day, sponsored by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), will be held in communities across America, including Columbiana County, to raise awareness about the dangers of prescription drug abuse.
Locally, area residents will have an opportunity to drop off their unused, unwanted or expired medications on April 28 from 10 a.m.-2 p.m., at either of two Columbiana County locations:
- East Liverpool City Hospital's Main Entrance, 425 W. Fifth Street in East Liverpool;
- Salem Medical Center (across the street from Salem Community Hospital), 2094 E. State Street in Salem.
How to Participate
-Area residents will remain in their cars and hand off the unwanted medications to local law enforcement officers, who will be the only staff handling the medications. No requests for identification will be asked.
If you cannot participate in the National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day on April 28th, you can dispose of your unwanted medications responsibly at home by following the guidelines below:
1. DO NOT FLUSH unused medications down the toilet and DO NOT POUR them down a sink or drain.
2. Pour the unused medication into a sealable plastic bag. Add a small amount of water to
the bag and mix gently to dissolve the medication if it is in a solid form, such as a pill,
liquid or capsule.
3. Add kitty litter, sawdust, coffee grounds (or another material that mixes with the
medication and makes it less appealing for pets and children to eat) to the plastic bag.
4. Seal the plastic bag and put it in the trash.
5. Remove and destroy ALL identifying personal information (prescription label) from all
medication containers before recycling them or throwing them away.
Facts regarding prescription drug use in Ohio:
- Between 1999 and 2009, there was a 335 percent increase in Ohio's death rate due to drug poisonings. (Ohio Dept. of Health Office of Vital Statistics)
- Between 2003 and 2011, among persons aged 12 or older who used painkillers for non-medical purposes, 55 percent obtained them free from a friend or relative; 17 percent were stolen from a friend or relative; 11 percent were bought from a friend or relative; 5 percent were prescriptions from a doctor, and 4 percent were purchased from a drug dealer or stranger.
- Ohio is ranked No. 3 in the nation in the total number of pharmacy-related robberies.
- According to the Ohio Youth Risk Behavior Survey, 2007), 27 percent of Ohio's students were using illegal prescription drugs.
-Medication may be kept in its original container or removed from the original container. If an original container is disposed, please try to remove any personal identifying information from the prescription label.
-Liquid medications may be dropped off, but make sure the cap is tightly sealed to prevent leakage.
Rising Prescription Drug Abuse
Prescription drugs account for the second most commonly abused category of drugs, behind marijuana and ahead of cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, and other drugs. National studies show that 70 percent of people, who abuse prescription pain relievers, obtained them from friends or relatives. In addition, more than 6 million Americans used a prescription medication for non-medical purposes in the past 30 days.
Because of the easy access to prescription and over-the-counter medications within people's homes, this drop-off event is designed to create a way for adults to anonymously, legally, and safely dispose of unused, unwanted, and expired medicine.
The one-day effort is being sponsored by the ADAPT Coalition, Columbiana County Drug Task Force, Columbiana County Health Dept., Columbiana County. Mental Health & Recovery Services Board, E. Liverpool City Health Dept., Family Recovery Center, E. Liverpool City Hospital, Salem City Health Dept., Salem City Police Dept., Salem Community Hospital, St. Clair Township Police Dept., and Heritage-WTI. These organizations are collaborating on this county-wide event to remove potentially dangerous controlled substances from people's homes.
Additional information about the National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day is available by contacting any of the following participating organizations: ADAPT Coalition (330-424-0531), Columbiana County Drug Task Force (330-424-0309), Columbiana County Health Dept. (330-424-0272), Columbiana County Mental Health & Recovery Services Board (330-424-0195), East. Liverpool City Health Dept. (330-385-7900), Family Recovery Center (330-424-1468), E. Liverpool City Hospital (330-386-2006), Salem City Health Dept.(330-332-1618), Salem City Police Dept. (330-337-6001), Salem Community Hospital (330-332-7152), or St. Clair Township Police Dept. (330-386-6496).