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MTSU collects 93 pounds of unwanted medications at...

MTSU collects 93 pounds of unwanted medications at drug take-back event

MTSU pharmacist Tabby Ragland, left, takes a bag of unwanted medications from Carolyn Powers, MTSU retiree, Thursday during the Campus Pharmacy/University Police drug take-back event at the Campus Recreation Center. This event is part of the Drug Enforcement Agency’s overall efforts to remove excess drugs from communities where they could be abused or misused, diverted into the wrong hands or disposed of in environmentally unsafe ways. (MTSU photo by J. Intintoli)

MTSU collected 93 pounds of expired, unused, and unwanted prescription and over-the-counter medicines during the fall MTSU Drug Take-Back Day, held Thursday, Oct. 25, in front of the Student Health, Wellness and Recreation Center.

Sponsored by the Campus Pharmacy and the University Police Department, the event is part of an ongoing national collection drive led by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency. This fall’s National Drug Take-Back Day is planned for Saturday, Oct. 27, around the country.

Meg Cothern, a fourth-year student with the University of Tennessee College of Pharmacy, logs unwanted medications turned in Thursday during the Campus Pharmacy/University Police drug take-back event at the Campus Recreation Center. This event is part of the Drug Enforcement Agency’s overall efforts to remove excess drugs from communities where they could be abused or misused, diverted into the wrong hands or disposed of in environmentally unsafe ways. (MTSU photo by J. Intintoli)

Meg Cothern, a fourth-year student with the University of Tennessee College of Pharmacy, logs unwanted medications turned in Thursday, Oct. 25, during the Campus Pharmacy/University Police drug take-back event at the Campus Recreation Center. This event is part of the Drug Enforcement Agency’s overall efforts to remove excess drugs from communities where they could be abused or misused, diverted into the wrong hands or discarded in environmentally unsafe ways. (MTSU photo by J. Intintoli)

The collections are an effort to remove excess drugs from communities where they could be abused or misused, diverted into the wrong hands or discarded in environmentally unsafe ways.

Almost 300 pounds of medicine have been collected at MTSU drug take-back events since 2016. About 400 tons of medicines have been collected and safely discarded nationwide since take-back events began in 2010.

The DEA’s National Drug Take-Back Day aims to provide a safe, secure and environmentally responsible means of disposing of prescription drugs while also educating the general public about the potential for abusing and trafficking medications.

The DEA reports that nonmedical use of controlled substance medications is at an all-time high. A study sponsored by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration revealed more than 54 percent of people who abuse prescription pain relievers got them through friends or relatives, a statistic that includes raiding the family medicine cabinet.

Meg Cothern, seated, a fourth-year student with the University of Tennessee College of Pharmacy, and MTSU pharmacist Tabby Ragland log unwanted medications turned in Thursday during the Campus Pharmacy/University Police drug take-back event at the Campus Recreation Center. This event is part of the Drug Enforcement Agency’s overall efforts to remove excess drugs from communities where they could be abused or misused, diverted into the wrong hands or disposed of in environmentally unsafe ways. (MTSU photo by J. Intintoli)

Meg Cothern, seated, a fourth-year student with the University of Tennessee College of Pharmacy, and MTSU pharmacist Tabby Ragland log unwanted medications turned in Thursday, Oct. 25, during the Campus Pharmacy/University Police drug take-back event at the Campus Recreation Center. This event is part of the Drug Enforcement Agency’s overall efforts to remove excess drugs from communities where they could be abused or misused, diverted into the wrong hands or disposed of in environmentally unsafe ways. (MTSU photo by J. Intintoli)

MTSU pharmacist Tabby Ragland, left, takes a bag of unwanted medications from Carolyn Powers, MTSU retiree, Thursday during the Campus Pharmacy/University Police drug take-back event at the Campus Recreation Center. This event is part of the Drug Enforcement Agency’s overall efforts to remove excess drugs from communities where they could be abused or misused, diverted into the wrong hands or disposed of in environmentally unsafe ways. (MTSU photo by J. Intintoli)

MTSU pharmacist Tabby Ragland, left, takes a bag of unwanted medications from MTSU retiree Carolyn Powers Thursday, Oct. 25, during the Campus Pharmacy/University Police drug take-back event at the Campus Recreation Center. This event is part of the Drug Enforcement Agency’s overall efforts to remove excess drugs from communities where they could be abused or misused, diverted into the wrong hands or disposed of in environmentally unsafe ways. (MTSU photo by J. Intintoli)

Some of the organizers for this fall’s MTSU Drug Take-Back Day, held Thursday, Oct. 25, at the Campus Recreation Center gather for a photo in front of the drop-off station while waiting to collect unwanted prescription and over-the-counter drugs. From left are MTSU Police Capt. Jeff Martinez; senior Emilee Cole, an intern with MTSU Health Promotion; Vinny Black, a health coach with Health Promotion; MTSU pharmacist Tabby Ragland; Meg Cothern, a fourth-year student with the University of Tennessee College of Pharmacy; and Kaysi Paul, grants manager/administrative assistant with the Prevention Coalition for Success. This event is part of the Drug Enforcement Agency’s overall efforts to remove excess drugs from communities where they could be abused or misused, diverted into the wrong hands or disposed of in environmentally unsafe ways. (MTSU photo by J. Intintoli)


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