The Long Beach Police Department (LBPD) and Long Beach Memorial Medical Center are teaming up to participate in the Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) National Pharmaceutical Take-Back initiative, alongside other law enforcement agencies throughout the country.
On Saturday from 10:00AM to 2:00PM, those wanting to dispose of their expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs can drop them off via the event’s free and anonymous drive-thru service. Drivers can enter through the main parking lot entrance at Memorial Medical Center off of Atlantic Avenue, drop their items into the disposal bin, and exit onto Long Beach Boulevard without having to exit their vehicle.
The driver of the 25th, 50th, 75th and 100th participating vehicles will be awarded a pair of tickets to visit the Aquarium of the Pacific.
The DEA’s program aims to prevent increased pill abuse as well as theft by collecting potentially dangerous prescription drugs. Through previous events the LBPD has yielded hundreds of pounds of pharmaceuticals, according to the release.
“This initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue,” the LBPD release stated. “Many Americans are not aware that medications that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse and abuse. Prescription drug abuse in the United States is increasing at alarming rates, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to their availability.”
Throwing prescriptions drugs away or flushing them down the toilet are improper ways to dispose of unused medications. Studies also show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including home medicine cabinets, according to the release. The pharmaceuticals collected on Saturday will be turned over to the DEA who will destroy them.
For more information regarding the National Take Back Initiative, visit the DEA’s website here or contact the Long Beach Police Department’s Drug Investigations Section at (562) 570-7221.
Long Beach Memorial Medical Center is located at 2801 Atlantic Avenue.