Returning Pain Medication can be Painless
Eureka Police Department and Rockwood Drug Free Coalition host another successful Drug Take-Back event today.
Another 92.2 pounds of unwanted medications from 39 people were collected in today's Drug Take-Back event hosted at the Eureka Police Department by local police officers and Rockwood Drug Free Coalition representatives.
In addition to extra medications, volunteers collected clothing to be donated to the Salvation Army, as well as recyclable electronics, including VHS players, TVs, and recorders. They also received a lawn mower and some other outdoor equipment.
First-time donor Dolores Beager, of Eureka, said she is glad these community leaders were offering this service. "No one used to tell you what to do with unwanted medications," she said.
Beager said she told her daughter about the event, and they discussed how much better it is to "get rid of drugs in a safe way like this, rather than flush them."
She said some of her donations had codeine in them, resulting from a family member who had pills after teeth surgery. She said she also was relieved to find a good place to transfer some injectables with blood-thinning substances in them that her husband no longer needed from when he had a blood clot.
"In the past, I asked at Walgreens if they would take and dispose of extra medications, but they said they could only take back what are not controlled substances," said Beager.
She said she worked for a veterinarian for 30 years, and was very familiar with the importance of keeping tabs on drugs. "It's so good that extra medications are being controlled through events such as today's. And many pet owners need a place to take their extra medical products, because at least 50 to 60 percent of animal-related drugs are the same as those used for humans."
Pete and Maureen Serve, of Eureka, said they were happy about today's collection because they waited for three months to bring in an older TV from their basement. "It's free today, compared to other times of the year when everyone may have to pay $20 to have it recycled," said Pete.
Danielle Shinn, of nearby Cedar Hill, said she was glad for the take-back program because it was better for the environment. "We had extra medicines stored in our closets, and been wondering what we would do with them," she said.
The importance of take-back events is especially evident when considering 70 percent of all people who abused prescription pain relievers got them from friends or relatives, according to statistics from the Rx/OTC Drug Abuse Prevention Task Force.