National ‘Drug Take Back Day’ kicks off Saturday

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CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) – Saturday is National Drug Take Back Day – a day for the public to prevent prescription drug misuse. If you have any expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs laying around, this is a great way to dispose of them in a safe and easy way.

“So sometimes we think about taking drugs off the street. This is really about taking medications out of our homes,” said Dr. Susan Bissett, President of the West Virginia Drug Intervention Institute.

Each year, there are two nationwide ‘Drug Take Back’ days: one in April and one in October. This past April’s numbers saw more than 100,000 pounds of prescription drugs taken out of homes in West Virginia.

“We know that a lot of times when someone abuses a prescription medication it’s because they have obtained that from a family or a friend,” added Bissett. This is something that hits close to home for Cece Brown, who lost her son Ryan to addiction in 2014. “Ryan was just like any other kid growing up. And that’s the difference, it can happen to anyone,” said Brown.

Brown says that’s why Drug Take Back Day is so important. “What they’re doing with this medication take back, that’s a part of it. That’s where it starts, you have to go back to the beginning. Prevention with children.”

Dr. Bissett adds, “These days are just another way to help combat the opioid crisis in the state. We know that in many ways the opioid crisis that we’re dealing with right now started with prescription medications. We’re seeing an increase in people misusing sedatives as well as anti-anxiety medication so its really important that we’re spreading that message of medication safety.”

There were 90 sites in April’s Drug Take Back Day. You can find a site near you by typing in your zip code here.

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