National Prescription Take Back Day aims to prevent drug abuse

October 23rd is National Prescription Take Back Day.
Published: Oct. 23, 2021 at 11:15 AM EDT
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - October 23rd is National Prescription Take Back Day.

In Lexington, many dropped off unused, unwanted, or expired medications.

Lexington DEA group supervisor Brendan Fitzpatrick expects to fill up about 100 boxes with drugs and supplements, averaging about 2,000 pounds.

“The idea of that is to prevent those medications from falling in the wrong hands,” Fitzpatrick says.

Fitzpatrick says household cabinets are a way people begin drug use or continue it.

“Certain medications that can be addictive, pain killers, things like that,” Fitzpatrick says. “Sometimes those drugs can lead to street drugs.”

It’s not just about getting rid of unneeded drugs, but doing so the right way according to Fitzpatrick. He says people often flush medications down the toilet, damaging our water system.

For the drugs you do need in the house, Fitzpatrick recommends locking them up or hiding them.

“Someone coming into your home, they might actually be seeking those kinds of medications,” Fitzpatrick says.

This is all as Fitzpatrick reports counterfeit medication sales are rising. He says sometimes these drugs are laced.

So now box by box, Fitzpatrick’s goal is to raise awareness, not just to declutter.

Prescription Take Back Day occurs bi-annually, coming back this Spring. If you’re looking to get rid of medications now, Fitzpatrick explains some local agencies have drop boxes in their lobbies.

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