Get Rid of Medicines the Safe Way on Saturday

April 29, 2011

This weekend might be a great one for some Spring cleaning, but don’t just throw away those expired prescription drugs.

In an effort to clear homes of potentially dangerous, expired, unused and unwanted medicines, the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association (BCBSA) is supporting the Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day on Saturday, April 30.

“Many do not know that prescription drug abuse is an epidemic,” said Allan Korn, M.D., BCBSA senior vice president and chief medical officer. “Unused prescription medicines that remain in homes can be misused or abused if they end up in the wrong hands of children, family or friends.”

On top of that, flushing medicines down the toilet or throwing them in the garbage can pose environmental health hazards.

On Saturday, April 30, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., the DEA will have more than 5,300 locations across the country open for the disposal of unwanted prescription drugs.

Chicago residents can bring their medicines to most Chicago Police Departments; many suburban police stations will be taking them too.

To find the best place for you, visit justice.gov.

During last year’s inaugural National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day, the DEA collected more than 121 tons of prescription drugs at almost 4,100 sites across the nation.

Do your part this year. Protect the environment and your family and give back what you don’t want.

“BCBSA and Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies nationwide are leading efforts to increase patient safety and make it a healthcare priority,” said Korn, “and we commend the DEA’s efforts of providing a safe and easy way for Americans to drop off their unnecessary prescription drugs.”

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