The Madison County Sheriff’s Office will hold a “Drug Take-Back Day” from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, April 26, at two locations: the Madison County Community Expo at the London Elementary School at 380 Elm St. (state Route 38) in London and at the parking lot of the Family Dollar Store at 279 Yankeetown St. in Mt. Sterling.
The West Jefferson Police Department also will have a drug take-back drop off point from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at The Gazebo in downtown West Jefferson at Main and North Center streets.
Deputies and officers will staff each drop-off point and will accept any form of pills, capsules, tablets, cold remedies, pain killers, vitamins, ointments, creams, inhalants, and liquids. However, needles and syringes will not be accepted.
When possible, it is recommended that a patient’s name, the name of the drug, and any other pertinent information be removed from a medication for privacy purposes.
“We want to continue to eliminate the possibilities of those types of drugs from falling into the wrong hands as well as providing citizens with a safe way to dispose of them,” said Madison County Sheriff Jim Sabin of the purpose of drug take-back days. “Prescription as well as over-the-counter medications will be accepted.”
“Drug Take-Back Day” is a nationwide initiative of the federal Drug Enforcement Administration in association with local law enforcement agencies. Seven previous take-back days have resulted in removing more than 3.4 million pounds of medication from circulation.
Last year, the Madison County Sheriff’s Office accepted more than $35,000 worth of unused and expired medications during two take-back days held in April and October. Since the first take-back day, the sheriff’s office has collected more than 200 pounds of medications.
“Anything that can be done to remove unused prescription or over-the-counter medications from easy access is worth doing,” Sabin said. “Folks have told us that they are extremely pleased and satisfied for the opportunity to safely drop off their medications and to know that they’re going to be disposed of properly.”
“No questions will be asked,” he added.
According to Sabin, moving the drop-off point to the Madison County Community Expo, where attendance continues to increase every year, will help emphasize the need to safely dispose of unused or expired medications as well as to provide a convenient location.
“Drug Take-Back Days” are events that help increase awareness of the danger of drug abuse that lurks in the family medicine cabinet, Sabin said.
“That’s been a prime target of thieves,” he continued. “What they find in the medicine cabinet such as unused OxyContin or Vicodin or even inhalants can be not only of high resale value on the street but also can be used to satisfy their own addictions.”
With such easy access to the medicine cabinet, there is also the possibility that a family member could become a victim of drug abuse whether out of curiosity or need.
“Drug abuse and addiction can strike any family no matter what their background or family situation,” said Sabin. “It is devastating to all members of the family when someone becomes addicted.”
He also advised families as well as administrators at senior living centers to check on medications that seniors may have been taking as those medications may have expired or are no longer needed, and could cause confusion regarding dosage regimens.
For more information on “Drug Take-Back Day,” contact the Madison County Sheriff’s Office at (740) 852-1212.