RX Take Back addresses health and safety issue | SierraSun.com

RX Take Back addresses health and safety issue

Photo courtesy TT-FWDDNevada County Sheriff Deputy Ron Smith (not pictured), Sheriff volunteers Bill Shaffer, Don McNaught, Richard Panzica and Tahoe-Truckee Future Without Drug Dependence volunteers Dianne and Dick Hilly help Truckee residents safely dispose of prescription and over-the-counter medications on Rx Take Back Day.

TAHOE/TRUCKEE, Calif. and#8212; The final numbers are in from the Rx Take Back Day events held on Saturday, April 28, 2012 and the tallies show Tahoe-Truckee residents deeply care about the safe disposal of unused prescription and over-the counter drugs. With events held in both Tahoe City and Truckee, volunteers, with the help of local law enforcement, collected more than 353 pounds of potentially dangerous expired, unused and unwanted prescription and over-the-counter drugs. This is five times more drugs than collected at the Rx Take Back Day held last October.

and#8220;Cars began rolling up early Saturday morning and we didnand#8217;t have a break in traffic until the event ended,and#8221; said Diane Hilly, a volunteer with Tahoe Truckee Future without Drug Dependence (TT-FWDD) that co-sponsored the event. and#8220;Word is clearly spreading fast throughout Tahoe-Truckee that Take Back Days serve as a convenient and effective venue for free, anonymous disposal of unused pharmaceuticals. In fact, about 90 percent of the participants surveyed asked for a permanent, secure collection bin within the community.and#8221;

Rx Take Back Day addresses a vital public safety and health issue in Tahoe-Truckee. Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse. Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are alarmingly high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs. Studies show a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet. In Tahoe-Truckee, prescription drugs are the third most used by youth next after alcohol and marijuana. In addition, residents are now advised their usual methods for disposing of unused medicines and#8212; flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash and#8212; both pose potential safety and health hazards.

Rx Take Back Day is a collaborative effort of TT-FWDD, Placer and Nevada County Sheriff and Health and Human Services, Truckee Police Department, Tahoe Forest Hospital District, Tahoe Truckee Sanitation Agency, Town of Truckee, and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency. For more information on future events or opportunities to support local substance abuse prevention efforts, contact TT-FWDD at http://www.ttfwdd.com or 530-546-1924.

and#8212; Submitted to aedgett@sierrasun.com

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