Approximately 29.2 pounds of prescription drugs and over-the-counter medications were collected from the campus community April 25 making the first MTSU Prescription Drug Take-Back Day very successful, event organizers said.
“Consider any amount that is kept away from misuse or improper disposal as a success,” MTSU Public Safety Sgt. Broede Stucky said just minutes before the event concluded in the Student Health, Wellness and Recreation Center.
No needles, or sharps as health officials refer to them, were collected, pharmacist Tabby Ragland of Campus Pharmacy said. She added that “just a few EpiPens” were collected. EpiPens are a disposable, prefilled automatic injection device that administers epinephrine in the event of a severe allergic reaction, the company’s website said.
Representatives from the federal Drug Enforcement Administration’s Nashville office are expected to collect all items sometime between April 30 and May 4.
“We will take and store for DEA,” Stucky said, adding that all the collected drugs will be locked in Public Safety’s vault.
In addition to MTSU personnel, students from Lipscomb University’s College of Pharmacy provided assistance. Volunteering their time were Andreea Rose of Murfreesboro, Stephanie Crews of Clarksville, Tenn., Jameson Bouldin of McMinnville, Tenn., and Kasey Grisham of Carthage, Tenn.
Ragland said that while not required by DEA, she and Lisa Schrader, director of MTSU Health Promotion, wanted to keep a record of prescription drugs. Five pages of information were gathered.
“We’ve taken in more things than expected,” Schrader said, adding that “it was busiest (Thursday) morning with the drive through.” From 7 to 9 a.m., people could drop off items outside in a collection box.
“We’ve already had questions about when we’re going to do it again,” Ragland said.
Campus Pharmacy, Health Services and Public Safety partnered to hold the event.
The National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day scheduled for Saturday, April 27, was postponed until Saturday, May 4, because of the potential for serve weather, Schrader said.
— Randy Weiler (Randy.Weiler@mtsu.edu)