The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

May 1, 2013

Drug Take-Back Day sets record in W.Va.

From Staff Reports

BECKLEY — West Virginians showed no hesitancy — or reluctance — in ridding their medicine cabinets of old drugs during the past weekend.

In the fifth Drug Take-Back Day, conducted at more than 100 drop-off sites across the state, residents turned in 4,642 pounds of unwanted, unused and expired prescription medications.

And that, U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin pointed out Tuesday, is a new record, surpassing the old mark of 4,572 pounds collected in April 2012.

“This year’s record total is another milestone in the fight against prescription drug abuse,” the federal prosecutor said.

“West Virginians understand how devastating the prescription drug problem is for our families and they’re responding in the most effective way they can, by getting rid of potentially dangerous medicine that the don’t need any more.”

Surrendered drugs were disposed of by the Drug Enforcement Agency, which sponsors the annual Take-Back events.

“Prescription drug abuse has plagued so many of our communities,” DEA resident agent John Ryan said.

“When people voluntarily take prescriptions out of their homes and dispose of them properly, it truly helps our fight against prescription drug abuse.”

More than 5,100 collection sites were in force nationally.

Federal, state and local law enforcement partners have collected more than 2 million pounds, or 1,018 tons, of medications nationwide since the program was inaugurated.