A record-breaking 912,305 kilos — or 456 tons — of doubtless harmful expired, unused and undesirable prescribed drugs have been collected in the course of the eighth annual Prescription Drug Take Again Day occasion final month, in response to a press launch Tuesday from the Drug Enforcement Company (DEA).
The DEA says that is virtually 6 tons greater than was collected final yr, and brings the whole quantity of tablets collected over the lifetime of this system to greater than 9 million kilos, or four,508 tons, of undesirable medication.
President Trump urged Individuals to take part to assist scale back the danger of opioid painkillers falling into the unsuitable arms.
Mr. Trump occasion took to Twitter on Tuesday to deal with the report haul of tablets collected by the DEA and thanked all Individuals who participated:
Thanks to all Individuals who participated in Nat’l Rx Drug Take Again Day. A report quantity of medication collected & disposed. We will do that!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 7, 2017
The DEA says the aim of this system is to take away opioids and different medicines from U.S. properties the place they might pose a danger to members of the family or guests trying to abuse or steal the medication.
“Extra individuals begin down the trail of habit by means of the misuse of opioid prescribed drugs than another substance,” mentioned Robert W. Patterson, appearing administrator of the DEA. “The abuse of those prescribed drugs has fueled the nation’s opioid epidemic, which has led to the best fee of overdose deaths this nation has ever seen.”
Drug overdose deaths in america have greater than doubled over the previous decade. The Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention says 188,000 individuals have died from opioid overdoses from 1999 to 2015.
The DEA’s subsequent Drug Take Again Day can be April 28, 2018.
The drug take again occasion Oct. 28 got here on the heels of President Trump’s announcement that he was declaring the opioid epidemic a public well being emergency.
“We’re going to overcome habit in America,” Mr. Trump mentioned Oct. 26, calling it a “nationwide disgrace” and a “human tragedy,” and pledging to confront the opioid epidemic “proper smack within the face.”
Additionally in October, lawmakers and the DEA confronted robust questions following a bombshell report by “60 Minutes” and The Washington Submit that mentioned Congress helped disarm the DEA’s efforts to crack down on opioid distribution.
Joe Rannazzisi, who used to run the DEA’s diversion management, informed “60 Minutes” correspondent Invoice Whitaker that the opioid disaster was aided partly by Congress, lobbyists and the drug distribution business.
The DEA says it has taken actions in opposition to far fewer opioid distributors below a brand new legislation. A Justice Division memo exhibits 65 medical doctors, pharmacies and drug firms acquired suspension orders in 2011, whereas solely six have gotten them this yr.
CBS Information’ Paula Reid stories the Justice Division, which oversees the DEA, doesn’t dispute any of the “60 Minutes” reporting. It says the drug disaster is a prime precedence for the Trump administration.
“One of many president’s and the legal professional common’s highest priorities is ending the devastating and unacceptable drug disaster in America that noticed 64,000 deaths in 2016, lots of them brought on by opioids,” Ian D. Prior, principal deputy director of public affairs on the Justice Division, mentioned in a written assertion. “From road sellers to deprave medical doctors to the distributors that permit diversion of lethal tablets, this administration is completely dedicated to reversing this disturbing and heartbreaking pattern and can use each software out there to take action.”
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