25 Tons of Drugs During April’s National Prescription Drug “Take Back”

25-tons-of-perscription-drugs-Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen, the Department of Natural Resources, and an Assistant Special Agent-in-Charge of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s Milwaukee District Office, today praised Wisconsin residents for their participation in April’s National Prescription Drug “Take-Back” Day. It resulted in 25 tons (50,485 lbs.) of unwanted, expired or unused prescription drugs being dropped off at 200 collection sites statewide. According to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), which coordinates the biannual “Take-Back” events nationwide, Wisconsin ranked third in the nation in the total amount collected.

“The pharmaceutical industry is one of the most highly regulated industries, yet prescription drug abuse continues to be a significant problem. Opiate based prescriptions also have been leading to heroin addiction in the suburbs in the past 10 years.

The “Take-Back” service is free and anonymous for those who wish to drop off unwanted, expired or unused prescription drugs during these events twice a year. During the last “Take-Back” Day in October of last year, Wisconsin residents dropped off 19.25 tons (38,506 lbs) worth of unwanted, expired or unused prescription drugs at nearly 180 collection sites statewide. According to the DEA, Wisconsin ranked 4th in the nation in the total amount collected in October 2013, trailing only the much larger states of California, Texas and New York. In addition to the many local law enforcement agencies that participate as drop-off sites for residents, the Wisconsin State Patrol, Wisconsin National Guard and special agents with the Department of Justice – Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI) assist with annual “Take-Back” efforts.