Drug Take Back Day
Metro Health and the City of Wyoming again will provide a Drug Take Back service between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Area residents are encouraged to bring unused prescriptions and over-the-counter medications to the main lobby of Metro Health Hospital in Wyoming.
The Wyoming Police Department will be on hand to anonymously accept medications, including controlled substances, with no questions asked. A pharmacist will be available throughout the event to answer questions about medications. Mercury thermometers may also be exchanged for a new digital thermometer from the City of Wyoming and Metro Health.
Growing concern over pharmaceutical pollution in waterways and prescription drug abuse has led cities nationwide 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.
Metro Health and the City of Wyoming partner twice a year to provide this service to the community. In April, the Drug Take Back Day event took in a record 724 pounds of prescription and over-the-counter drugs and 50 mercury thermometers.
The City of Wyoming also offers a prescription drug drop-off service 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday at the Department of Public Safety, 2300 DeHoop Ave. SW.
According to the West Michigan Take Back Meds website, 20 percent to 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. For more on West Michigan Take Back Meds, visit www.wmtakebackmeds.com.