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Drug Take Back Day happening Saturday in Kent County

en:User:Sponge via Wikimedia | CC BY 3.0

Residents can turn in unwanted or expired prescriptions freely and anonymously as part of the annual National Prescription Drug Take Back Day. Health officials say this can help keep the community safe

“We’re asking the public to look into their medicine cabinets, do some spring cleaning and dispose of anything that is no longer used.”

That’s Dan Wicklund, the Nurse Education for Addiction Medicine at Corewell Health.

He says Corewell Health, Priority Health and the Kent County Health Department are teaming up once again to collect unwanted prescription drugs for safe disposal.

National Prescription Drug Take Back Day is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Justice Drug Enforcement Administration. Authorities advise dropping off the medications and not flush down the toilet or throw in the trash due to potential safety and health hazards.

Health officials say by dropping off unused medications, you're playing a critical role that could help keep family members and the community safe even as it relates, in part to the opioid crisis.

“One of the areas we see people being introduced to opioid medications is looking in cabinets for prescriptions whether that’s from a loved one, a neighbor or a friend; So, by being aware of this, and reducing that potential,. By having drug take back days, by taking out of our cabinets, we reduce the potential that someone may be exposed to a substance overall.”

The event will be held at several locations including the Corewell Health Care Center in Cutlerville, Priority Health on Leonard in Grand Rapids and the Kent County Health Department.

Grand Rapids Police Department and Kent County Sheriff will oversee the local collection sites to ensure the drugs are disposed of in an appropriate manner.

A complete listing of drop off sites can be found at DEA.gov.

Jennifer is an award winning broadcast news journalist with more than two decades of professional television news experience including the nation's fifth largest news market. She's worked as both news reporter and news anchor for television and radio in markets from Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo all the way to San Francisco, California.
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