DEA Fights Prescription Drug Errors and Abuse with National Take-Back Initiative

In recent pharmacy injury news, that our Baltimore, Maryland attorneys at Lebowitz and Mzhen, LLC have been interested in, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) recently held a nationwide prescription drug “take-back” day. The event was designed to curb health hazards and medication errors that can occur when people hold on to expired medications or throw away unwanted drugs.

According to the DEA, prescription drugs in home medicine cabinets are at great risk for misuse, abuse and theft, as reports show that a large majority of prescription medication errors and abuse come from the drug cabinets of friends and families. The initiative was also striving to combat drug abuse with kids, who are reportedly finding old unused drugs in homes, and bringing them to school, or parties to get high—resulting in tragic drug error injury.

Last week in a medication error in Washington State, nine teenagers were hospitalized after taking prescription medications that were found in homes and passed around at a school bus stop. The kids reportedly took painkillers and anti-depressants. In another case in Philadelphia, an 18-year old accidentally overdosed on a pain reliever medication found at home.

The DEA initiative set up around 4,000 “take-back” drop off sites across the country to encourage people to drop off drugs, where no questions were asked. People were encouraged to either remove the medication labels or to cross out personal information before dropping the drugs at the site.

According to The DEA, there were around 4,094 collection sites, with nearly 3,000 state and local law enforcement agencies participating in the nationwide initiative to remove potentially dangerous medications from medicine cabinets and prevent medication error or abuse in families and communities.

CNN reports that Gil Kerlikowske, director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy claims that prescription medication abuse is the fastest-growing drug problem in the country, and the collaboration of local, state and federal resources in this take back initiative was crucial in the country’s efforts to reduce prescription medication abuse and diversion.

In Baltimore, Maryland, contact our prescription medication error injury lawyers today.

Multiple Benefits to DEA’s Prescription Take-Back, ABC News, September 26, 2010
National Take-Back Initiative, U.S. Department of Justice: Drug Enforcement Administration: Office of Diversion Control Press Release
Bring Us Your Unused Prescription Drugs, DEA says, CNN, September 21, 2010

Related Web Resources:

White House Office of National Drug Control Policy

U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA)

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