Dr. Kara Odom Walker, Secretary
Jill Fredel, Director of Communications
302-255-9047, Pager 302-357-7498
Date: November 16, 2017
DOVER (Nov. 16, 2017) - In the 15th Prescription Drug Take-Back Day event on Oct. 28, Delaware collected 5,518 pounds of unwanted or expired medicine according to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the Division of Public Health (DPH). Since the first event in May 2010, Delaware has collected a total of 76,474 pounds of unwanted or expired medicine.
In addition to the 22 locations statewide on Oct. 28, there are also 21 permanent medicine drop-off locations throughout the state. DPH officials say the increase in collections can be attributed to the cumulative efforts of the permanent drug collection sites, which turned in their medications collected over several months to the DEA on the day of the event.
National studies show that more than 70 percent of people abusing prescription pain relievers obtain them through friends or relatives, or by raiding medicine cabinets. The studies also suggest that twice as many Americans regularly abused prescription drugs than the number who regularly used cocaine, hallucinogens, heroin, and inhalants combined.
"The fact that the public is using the Drug Take-Back Day collection sites to dispose of expired and unwanted medications is very encouraging," said DPH Director Dr. Karyl Rattay. "At this time two years ago, we had eight permanent collection sites and have increased that to 21, thanks to Walgreens and local law enforcement locations, making it easier for our residents to access regardless of their geography. Since people often begin experimenting with drugs at home or from the homes of family or friends, it is extremely important that we hold events such as these to minimize the risk of drug abuse and addiction."
DPH urges Delawareans to keep medications locked away and to drop them off at a permanent drug collection location when they are no longer wanted, necessary or have expired.
For recommendations on handling unwanted or expired prescription drugs, contact the DEA at 1-800-882-9539. If you were unable to participate in the Oct. 28 event, you can still dispose of your prescription medication at one of Delaware's 21 permanent drug disposal sites. View the list of sites at www.DelawareHealthyHomes.org.
The cumulative collections from the twice-annually Delaware Prescription Drug Take-Back Day events are:
|Event date||# Pounds|
|May 14, 2010||1,680 lbs|
|September 25, 2010||303 lbs.|
|April 30, 2011||4,395 lbs.|
|October 29, 2011||4,465 lbs.|
|April 28, 2012||6,808 lbs.|
|September 29, 2012||4,561 lbs.|
|April 27, 2013||6,122 lbs.|
|October 26, 2013||5,258 lbs.|
|April 26, 2014||6,476 lbs.|
|September 27, 2014||4,707 lbs.|
|September 12, 2015||7,227 lbs.|
|April 30, 2016||7,684 lbs.|
|October 22, 2016||6,059 lbs.|
|April 29, 2017||5,211 lbs.|
|October 28, 2017||5,518 lbs.|
Delaware Health and Social Services is committed to improving the quality of the lives of Delaware's citizens by promoting health and well-being, fostering self-sufficiency, and protecting vulnerable populations. DPH, a division of DHSS, urges Delawareans to make healthier choices with the 5-2-1 Almost None campaign: eat 5 or more fruits and vegetables each day, have no more than 2 hours of recreational screen time each day (includes TV, computer, gaming), get 1 or more hours of physical activity each day, and drink almost no sugary beverages.
Delaware Health and Social Services is committed to improving the quality of the lives of Delaware's citizens by promoting health and well-being, fostering self-sufficiency, and protecting vulnerable populations.