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Highland Lakes residents can safely dispose of old and unused prescription drugs at the Marble Falls Police Department, 606 Avenue N, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, April 24, known nationally as Take Back Day, which the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration started 10 years ago to fight prescription drug abuse. According to research, the majority of abused prescription drugs come from the abuser’s family and friends.

Tablets, capsules, patches, and other solid forms of prescription drugs will be collected. Liquids (including intravenous solutions), syringes, and illegal drugs will not be accepted. 

The DEA hosts this event twice a year. During the last one, in October 2020, more than 500 tons of unused and/or expired prescription drugs across the country were turned in. Over the past 10 years, more than 6,800 tons of unneeded and unwanted prescription drugs have been taken out of home medicine cabinets and away from possible abuse.

These types of events are now even more crucial. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the United States has seen an increase in drug overdose deaths during the COVID-19 pandemic with 87,000 people dying from overdoses from Sept. 1, 2019, to Sept. 1, 2020. This is the most ever recorded, according to DEA officials.

Take Back Day also gives people a place to properly dispose of prescription drugs instead of throwing them in the trash, flushing them down the toilet, or washing them down the sink, which can harm the environment and contaminate water supplies. 

Visit the Take Back Day website for more information.