Community Coalition for Rhinebeck Youth to host local Drop-Off Location for
DEA Nationwide Drug Take-Back Day April 28 at
Northern Dutchess Hospital in Rhinebeck, NY
April 24 (Rhinebeck, NY) – This Saturday, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and its national and community partners will give the public another opportunity to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription and other drugs.
On Saturday, April 28th, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., DEA and its partners will hold their fourth National Drug Take-Back Day at sites nationwide. The Community Coalition for Rhinebeck Youth, a volunteer organization of parents, school and community leaders, and residents, has once again partnered with Rhinebeck Village Police and Northern Dutchess Hospital on Springbrook Avenue in Rhinebeck, to host a drop-off location. The service is free and anonymous, no questions asked.
Americans participating in DEA’s three previous Take-Back Days turned in nearly a million pounds—almost 500 tons—of drugs at over 5,300 sites operated by more than 4,000 of the DEA’s state and local law enforcement partners. The Rhinebeck site collected more than 220 pounds of medication between the two Medication Take-Back Days in 2011. Says Elissa Cascio, Community Coalition for Rhinebeck Youth, or CC4RY, Steering Committee Member and organizer of the Rhinebeck Drug Take-Back Location, “We were shocked to have collected so much medication at these events last year considering how small of a town we are. However, it really drove home for us that there is a strong need for public focus on the issue of unused drugs lingering in homes in our community.”
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–more Americans currently abuse prescription drugs than the number of those using cocaine, hallucinogens, and heroin combined, according to the 2010 National Survey on Drug Use and Health. Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet.
“Prescription drug abuse is a major epidemic across the country and DEA is committed to reducing the potential for misuse by providing a safe and secure method for Americans to clean out their medicine cabinets and properly dispose of unwanted, unneeded, or expired medications,” said DEA Administrator Michele M. Leonhart. “Americans responded overwhelmingly to DEA’s first three Take-Back Day events, disposing of nearly 500 tons of medication in the past two years. This nationwide community effort prevents home medicine cabinets from becoming sources of dangerous – and even deadly – drugs.”
If the Rhinebeck location is inconvenient, the public can find a nearby collection site by visiting www.dea.gov, clicking on the “Got Drugs?” icon, and following the links to a database, where they enter their zip code.
CC4RY encourages everyone to collect their expired, unused, and no-longer-needed medications from around their home and bring them for safe disposal to Northern Dutchess Hospital on Saturday, April 28th between 10am and 2pm. It does not matter what container they are in. Says Cascio, “We ask the public to spread the word to friends and neighbors. If you were prescribed more pills than you needed, get rid of them at our Take-Back Event in a way that is safe, easy, and responsible. Everyone has old prescription and over-the-counter medicine at home that is expired or no-longer-needed, and now is the perfect opportunity to do what you can to make sure it stays out of the wrong hands.”