On Tuesday, October 18 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. the Holy Rosary Healthcare and Eastern Montana Drug Task Force will give the public its 12th opportunity in six years to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs.
Those with medications may bring them to the HRH Main Lobby at 2600 Wilson Street. There they will be collected, and subsequently destroyed, by the Eastern Montana Drug Task Force and local DEA. Only pills or patches may be turned in at this event; liquids, needles and sharps are not accepted. This service is both free and anonymous; no questions asked.
Last spring, the DEA and over 4,200 of its state, local, and tribal law enforcement partners collected 893,498 pounds of unwanted medicines —about 447 tons—at almost 5,400 sites spread through all 50 states. Over 2,900 pounds in Montana were collected at 29 collection sites with over 250 pounds were collected by Holy Rosary Healthcare and Eastern Montana Drug Task Force.
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, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs. Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet. In addition, Americans are now advised that their usual methods for disposing of unused medicines—flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash—both pose potential safety and health hazards.
For more information about the drug take back event, please contact Jessica Kuipers at Holy Rosary Healthcare.