Sheriff Craig Webre announced the Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office will partner with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, the Bayou Council on Alcoholism, and Ochsner St. Anne Hospital for National Prescription Drug Take Back Day. From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, October 28, 2017, citizens may drop off unwanted medications to a collection station at the main entrance of Ochsner St. Anne Hospital located at 4608 Highway 1 in Raceland. The service is free, anonymous, and no questions are asked.
All solid dosage pharmaceutical products and liquids in consumer containers are accepted. Liquid products, such as cough syrup, should remain sealed in their original container. The depositor should ensure the cap is tightly sealed to prevent leakage. Items that will not be accepted include intravenous solutions, injectable drugs, and syringes (due to potential hazards posed by blood-borne pathogens).
In addition to accepting medication, the Bayou Council on Alcoholism will be giving away free prescription drug lock boxes. These boxes can be used inside the home to ensure the security of medications which are actively being used.
During the last National Prescription Drug Take Back Day in April, Americans turned in a record 450 tons (over 900,000 pounds) of prescription drugs at approximately 5,500 sites operated by the DEA and its thousands of state and local law enforcement partners. Since these events began in 2010, more than 8.1 million pounds of prescription drugs have been collected.
This initiative helps prevent drug abuse and theft by ridding people’s homes of potentially dangerous, expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs by turning them over to the Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office for destruction. According to the 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 6.4 million Americans abused controlled prescription drugs. The study shows that a majority of abused prescription drugs were obtained from family and friends, often from the home medicine cabinet. Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse. Flushing unused medications down the toilet or throwing them in the trash both pose potential safety and health hazards.
Residents are reminded that the Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office provides this service year-round as residents can drop off unused medications at three of our office locations: Administrative Office (200 Canal Blvd., Thibodaux), Criminal Operations Center (805 Crescent Ave., Lockport), and the South Lafourche Sub-station (102 West 91st St., Cut Off). A prescription drug drop box is available in the lobby of each of the offices and is accessible during normal working hours, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekdays. In contrast to these drop off boxes, the National Prescription Drug Take Back Event takes place at a neutral site and during the weekend.
“We encourage all citizens to clean out their medicine cabinets of unused medication, preventing any chance of misuse,” said Sheriff Webre. “While we offer this service year-round, we are happy to partner with local organizations for this national event as we join thousands of other agencies across the country to help fight prescription drug abuse.”