PLAINFIELD, NJ — Today is the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s 20th National Prescription Drug Take Back Day to help people dispose of potentially harmful prescription drugs. Over a ten-year period, the DEA has collected more than 6,800 tons of prescription drugs. Last year there were 4,153 law enforcement sites participating in National Take Back Day.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there has been an increase in overdose deaths during the COVID-19 pandemic. There were 83,544 Americans who overdosed during the 12 months ending July 1, 2020, the most ever recorded in a 12-month period, according the DEA.
Police Director Lisa Burgess reminds residents that the Plainfield Police Department has a drop box in the lobby. "This box has been in place for some time now and is available 24 hours a day."
What you can and cannot put in the drop box:
- You can drop off tablets, capsules, patches and other solid forms of prescriptions
- Liquids, syringes and other sharps, and illegal drugs are not accepted
Studies indicate a majority of abused drugs come from family and friends, so disposing of unused medicine is essential, according to the DEA. The 2019 National Survey on Drug Use and Health found:
- 9.7 million people misused prescription pain relievers
- 4.9 million people misused prescription stimulants
- 5.9 million people misused prescription tranquilizers or sedatives