Semi-annual DEA RX Pill Round-up a success

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The Robertson County Community Coalition and the Drug Enforcement Administration held their 6th semi-annual prescription pill round-up last Saturday in Hearne and Franklin. The event collected 30,843 pills, or approximately 150 pounds of expired, unused, and unwanted prescription and over the counter drugs. The event also collected 4,888 milliliters of liquid medicine. This is an increase of over 7,000 pills from the event held last April.

Coalition members and local law enforcement encouraged community members to drop off over-the-counter and prescription medications for safe disposal. This event is held nationally to combat rising teen prescription drug abuse, according to the 2010 Texas School Survey, one in three Robertson County students reported having abused prescription and over-the-counter medications. Seventy percent of these teens report that they get their drugs from friends and family, often right out of the home medicine cabinet.

Prescription drug abuse is particularly dangerous among teens because they take pills not knowing what they are, or what their health risks and interactions with other medicines, drugs and alcohol might be. Emergency workers routinely respond to calls involving unconscious patients. Most of the time, prescription pill abuse is to blame.

Last April, Americans turned in over 376,593 pounds, 188 tons, of prescription drugs at nearly 4,100 sites operated by more than 5,000 of the DEA’s state and local law enforcement partners. This represents a 55% increase in collections from the DEA’s first round-up held in September 2010.

The coalition is already planning its next prescription pill round-up for April 2014. Members are also discussing placing permanent drop-off sites throughout the community.

In addition to disposing of unused medications, the Robertson County Community Coalition also urges citizens to talk to their teens and keep themselves educated about prescription pill abuse, keep a month-to-month inventory of all home medicines and lock up dangerous prescriptions.

For more information on the Robertson County Community Coalition, or to request a free prescription pill lock box for your home, please call Carrie Kenney at (979) 846-3560 ext. 128.

Local Report | Robertson County News

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