(WJHL) – For the 11th annual National Drug Take-Back Day, local authorities are doing their part to make sure prescription medications don’t make their way into the wrong hands.
Originally started by the Drug Enforcement Administration, the day serves to remind Americans that expired and unused medications can still put you or others at risk.
“The biggest danger is accidental overdose if somebody takes something wrong, if they keep it around too long,” said Jennifer Berven, director of the Promise Center and Insight Alliance. “Diversion- which means either it gets stolen or young children or teenagers might get into it, as well as just having a lot of medications on hand can make somebody a target.”
Alongside personal medications, the day has been expanded to take in vaping devices and cartridges.
“Between 50 and 75% of the people who come bring at least one controlled substance and that’s a medication that’s dangerous,” said Berven. “Not to keep in the home, that is a target of diversion or theft.”
“There’s also an environmental factor because if you flush them or just throw them in the trash, they wind up in the landfill and in the watertable which overtime could be dangerous for the environment,” Berven said.
Within the Tri-Cities, there are several spots that you can drop off bottles that you no longer need:
- Sullivan County – 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office, Municipal parking lot and Dobyns-Bennett High School parking lot.
- Elizabethton – 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the new 511 East F St. Police Station.
- Johnson City – 10 a.m. at the East Main Street Police Department.
- Bristol – 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Bristol, Tennessee City Hall on Anderson Street.