National Prescription Drug Take-Back day set for Saturday in Pascagoula

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It's part of National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day.

Six location sites will be set up from 10 2 p.m. Saturday in locations ranging from Beaumont to Port Arthur, locally.

Attorney General Hunter, who is leading the state's battle to combat the opioid epidemic, said getting rid of unused medication prevents others from accessing them, in turn averting potential drug addiction or overdose deaths. The president's national health emergency declaration opens certain federal funds to drug treatment groups, among other things.

Sponsors of the local collection event include the Drug Free Community Coalition, St. Joseph Youth Alliance, Buchanan County Sheriff's Department and the St. Joseph Police Department.

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The event is organized by the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Department of Health and Social Services and Leitzinger says they try to make it convenient. "Keeping unused, unnecessary, or expired medication in homes increases the risk of it being abused".

Throughout the program's seven-year existence, the DEA and its partners have taken in more than 8.1 million pounds or 4,050 tons of pills. The collection centers will only accept pills or patches.

Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet.

Last April the public turned in 450 tons (900,000 pounds) of prescription drugs at nearly 5,500 sites operated by the DEA and more than 4,200 of its state and local law enforcement partners.