Mid-Missouri cities collect prescription drugs and medicine
BOONE COUNTY - Mid-Missouri cities participated in National Drug Take-Back Day Saturday.
The Drug Enforcement Agency sponsors the event. Anyone can bring over-the-counter medications including inhalers, liquids, ointments, patches and pills.
In the previous nine Take-Back events nationwide from 2010-2014, 4,823,251 pounds of drugs were collected, according to the DEA.
"The National Prescription Drug Take-Back addresses a vital public safety and public health issue," the DEA said in a news release. "Many Americans are not aware that medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse."
Sgt. Brian Leer with the Boone County Sheriff's Department said it's a great way for people to get rid of medicine they're not using.
"A lot of people take care of their elderly parents, and once their elderly parents either pass away or no longer need the medication, they're stuck with this medication, and they just don't know what to do with it," Leer said.
Leer said bringing in unwanted prescription drugs to one of the drop-off sites is a good way to free up space, too.
"A lot of them bring in a whole Walmart sack or grocery sack full of prescription drugs," Leer said. "They say, 'Hey thanks for doing this. I didn't know what to do with these. They've been sitting in my medicine cabinet.'"
Drop-off sites in Columbia included Harry S. Truman VA Hospital, the MU Student Center, Hickman High School and Rock Bridge High School. Other Boone County locations included Southern Boone High School in Ashland, the Centralia Police Department, Hallsville Intermediate School Commons and Prenger's Grocery Store in Sturgeon. Macon and Osage Beach also participated.
Leer said the Boone County Sheriff's Department makes sure medicines at their drop-off sites were properly disposed of.
To find out how to properly dispose prescription drugs, go to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's website.
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