FRANKFORT, Ky. – Kentucky collected more than 9,000 pounds of unused or unneeded medications during the DEA National Drug Take Back Day, eliminating their risk of being diverted and abused.
A total of 9,135 pounds were collected at Take Back events, which were held in conjunction with state and local law enforcement agencies throughout Kentucky, according to the Office of Drug Control Policy. The drugs will be properly disposed of in an environmentally friendly manner.
“Kentucky continues to make strides in its fight to reduce substance abuse and the devastating toll it takes on our families,” Gov. Steve Beshear said. “Since studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, removing unwanted drugs from home medicine cabinets is a critical step in this goal.”
This total was the largest by far for the state since at least October 2011, when Kentucky began tracking its collection from the national event. The Drug Take Back held in April of this year resulted in 7,171 pounds of medications being turned in. Last October, 4,961 pounds were collected.
“Education is an important tool in reducing substance abuse and addiction,” ODCP Executive Director Van Ingram said. “These numbers indicate that people are hearing the message that medicines left in home cabinets are susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse.”
Ingram noted that these Take Back Days are in addition to the permanent prescription disposal locations available throughout the Commonwealth.
Since October 2011, Kentucky has collected 33,170 pounds at Take Back events.