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On Saturday, October 28, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. the City of Canal Winchester and the Diley Ridge Medical Center, in cooperation with the Fairfield County Sheriff’s Office and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), will give the public its 13th opportunity in seven years to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs. Bring your pills for disposal to the Diley Ridge Medical Center parking lot at 7911 Diley Rd. (The DEA cannot accept liquids or needles or sharps, only pills.) The service is free and anonymous, with no questions asked. Canal Winchester’s Take-Back event offers participants a drive-thru setting to drop any unwanted prescription drugs and continue on their way.
"Prescription drug abuse is a very serious issue in our community and throughout central Ohio," said Aimee Milligan, president & COO, Diley Ridge Medical Center. "It's important we do all that we can to help combat this epidemic—that's why we were eager to partner with the Mayor's Office to bring this event to our community."
Last April, Canal Winchester residents turned in just over 126 pounds of pills at the Diley Ridge drive-up site. Throughout the country, Americans turned in 450 tons (over 900,000 pounds) of prescription drugs at almost 5,500 sites operated by the DEA and more than 4,200 of its state and local law enforcement partners, turning in more unused prescription drugs than at any of the 12 previous National Prescription Drug Take Back Day events. Overall, in its previous Take Back events, DEA and its partners have taken in over 8 million pounds—about 4,000 tons—of pills. Since joining the DEA program in 2011, more than 200,000 prescription pills have been collected at the Diley Ridge drop off location. “We hope everyone in the area will again take advantage of this opportunity to dispose of their expired and unwanted medications,” said Mayor Michael Ebert. “We’d like to thank our partners and volunteers who help make this event possible, and to thank Diley Ridge Medical Center for allowing us to use their property.”
The National Prescription Drug Take Back Day Initiative addresses a crucial public safety and public health issue. According to the 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 6.4 million Americans abused controlled prescription drugs. The study shows that a majority of abused prescription drugs were obtained from family and friends, often from the home medicine cabinet. The DEA’s Take Back Day events provide an opportunity for Americans to prevent drug addiction and overdose deaths.
In addition to the success of the take-back initiative, new regulations in effect over the last several years have made the disposal of controlled prescription drugs easier for patients and their caregivers as many law enforcement agencies, pharmacies, hospitals and clinics have begun continuous collection of unused medications. To visit a collection site between Take Back Days, visit www.rxdrugdropbox.org.
For a list of additional collection sites in neighboring communities, visit www.swaco.org.