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Metro Health Hospital Participates in National Drug Take Back Day

Posted: April 5, 2012

Thinking about flushing your unused medications down the toilet? Don’t. Metro Health Hospital can help you get rid of them safely on Saturday, April 28.

Metro Health will once again participate in National Drug Take Back Day, which is sponsored by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration. Between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., area residents will be able to return unused prescriptions to the Granger Green common area of Metro Health’s campus. A pharmacist will be available throughout the event to answer questions about medications.

The Wyoming Police Department will be on hand to anonymously accept all prescriptions and over-the-counter medications, including controlled substances, with no questions asked.

Growing concern over pharmaceutical pollution in waterways and prescription drug abuse has led cities across the nation to develop drug take back programs. The West Michigan Take Back Meds program is a joint effort between local pharmacies, law enforcement, wastewater treatment facilities and government agencies to provide residents with safe, convenient access to proper medicine disposal. Medications collected in West Michigan are transported to Kent County’s Waste to Energy Facility where they are incinerated.

According to the West Michigan Take Back Meds website, 20-60 percent of prescription medications go unused and are eventually disposed. A 2002 analysis by the U.S. Geological Survey of 139 streams across 30 states found that 80 percent of waterways tested had measurable concentrations of prescription and nonprescription drugs, steroids and reproductive hormones.

This is the fourth drug take back event to be held nationally. In October, the event brought in more than 188.5 tons from 5,327 locations across the country. Locally, Metro Health collected 170 pounds of expired or unused prescriptions, over the counter drugs and controlled substances from 70 community members and recycled 40 pounds of drug packaging. To find out more about the program visit, www.wmtakebackmeds.com.

To find other drop off locations, click here.  Simply click on “Collection Site Locator” and enter your zip code. 



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