LBPD & Health Department to Collect Prescription Drugs for Safe Disposal

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prescription-drugs for safe disposalThe Long Beach Police Department and the Long Beach Department of Health and Human Services, along with other law enforcement agencies around the nation, will once again be participating in the Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) National Pharmaceutical Take-Back initiative.

This initiative seeks to prevent increased pill abuse and theft through the collection of potentially dangerous expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs. Last year, the City of Long Beach’s participation was highly successful, collecting over 700 pounds of pharmaceuticals, the second highest amount collected of the numerous California cities that participated. Once again, the L.B.P.D. and D.E.A. will be collecting these types of drugs for proper disposal on Saturday, April 30, 2011, from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. at the Department of Health and Human Services, located at 2525 Grand Avenue. The event will offer a drive-thru type of service, which is free and anonymous, no questions asked.

This initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue. Many Americans are not aware that medications that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse and abuse. Rates of prescription drug abuse in the United States are increasing at alarming rates, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs. Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from home medicine cabinets. In addition, many Americans do not know how to properly dispose of their unused medications, often flushing them down the toilet or throwing them away … both potential safety and health hazards.

The L.B.P.D. will collect the unwanted pharmaceuticals and turn them over to the DEA who will safely destroy the drugs. For more information regarding the National Take Back Initiative, visit or contact the Long Beach Police Department’s Drug Investigations Section at (562) 570-7221.

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