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National Drug Take Back Initiative April 28

FARMVILLE – On April 28 the Farmville Police Department and Longwood University Police Department will again join with law enforcement agencies across the nation to participate in the fourth National Drug Take Back Initiative, designed to remove potentially dangerous prescription and other medications from homes by allowing citizens to anonymously dispose of them in a safe manner.

The Buckingham County Sheriff's Department and the federal Drug Enforcement Agency are coordinating the effort in that county.

Last year, agencies collected over 121 tons of prescription drugs for proper disposal. The Farmville Police Department and Longwood University Police Department, for example, collected 33.2 pounds of unused or expired prescription drugs last October.

In Farmville, from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. officers from both departments will be collecting unwanted or expired medications at Midtown Square between Barnes & Noble Bookstore and Chick-fil-A. Citizens may drive through to drop off medications, with no questions asked and without having to exit their vehicles. To remain anonymous, donors should remove the labels from all containers, or they may dump loose medications directly into our collection box. However, any liquids should remain sealed in their own containers. Intravenous solutions, injectables, and syringes cannot be accepted at this time.

In Buckingham, for the observance of this National Take Back Initiative, the sberiff's department and the DEA will host a collection site from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the parking lot of Food Lion, at the intersection of Routes 15 and 20.

Take Back Day offers a unified opportunity for the public to surrender expired, unwanted, or unused pharmaceutical controlled substances and other medications to law enforcement officers for destruction and proper disposal.

According to a press release from Sheriff William G. Kidd, this one-day effort is designed to bring national focus to the issue of pharmaceutical controlled substance abuse. The program provides an opportunity for law enforcement to partner with the prevention, treatment and business community to collaborate and establish a safe collection site for all Americans, regardless of where they reside.

During the April 28 Take Back Day, controlled, non-controlled and over the counter substances-expired, unwanted, or unused-will be collected.

Participants may dispose of medication in its original container or by removing the medication from its container and disposing of it directly into the disposal box.

All solid dosage pharmaceutical products as well as liquids in consumer containers will be accepted. However, liquid products, such as cough syrup, should remain in their original container with the cap tightly sealed to prevent leakage.

Due to the potential hazards posed by blood-borne pathogens, intra-venous solutions, injectibles, and syringes will not be accepted.

Sheriff Kidd stressed that this program is anonymous and all efforts will be made to protect the anonymity of individuals disposing of medications. No questions or requests for identification will be made. Additionally, law enforcement will not make any efforts to inventory or log medications that are being disposed.

“I encourage Buckingham residents to join with me and take advantage of this opportunity by checking through our medicine cabinets and disposing of medications that are expired, unused, or unwanted during Take Back Day,” shared Kidd.

A press release from the DEA's Office of Diversion and Control offered that Americans who participated in the DEA's third National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day on October 29, 2011, turned in more than 377,086 pounds (188.5 tons) of unwanted or expired medications for safe and proper disposal at the 5,327 take-back sites that were available in all 50 states and U.S. territories.

When the results of the three prior Take-Back Days are combined, the DEA, and its state, local, and tribal law-enforcement and community partners have removed 995,185 pounds (498.5 tons) of medication from circulation in the past 13 months, cited the DEA release.

“The amount of prescription drugs turned in by the American public during the past three Take-Back Day events speaks volumes about the need to develop a convenient way to rid homes of unwanted or expired prescription drugs,” said DEA Administrator Michele M. Leonhart. “DEA remains hard at work to establish just such a drug disposal process, and will continue to offer take-back opportunities until the proper regulations are in place.”

Leonhart continued, “With the continued support and hard work of our more than 3,945 state, local, and tribal law enforcement and community partners, these three events have dramatically reduced the risk of prescription drug diversion and abuse, and increased awareness of this critical public health issue.”

For questions or more information about Buckingham's Take Back Initiative, contact BCSO Investigator Harris at (434)969-1772.