Opioid take back day: This map shows you where to return your unused prescriptions
Saturday is National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, which is part of a DEA program that allows Americans to safely dispose of their unused medication. Pharmacies and police departments all over the country are participating in the event. To help people find drop-off locations in their area, the group New America has teamed up with Esri, a spatial analytics firm, to create an interactive map of thousands of sites across the country. Just zoom in to your city or town and click the little pill icon—a window will pop up with the name of the location.
A study published in JAMA last year found that as many as 92% of patients don’t finish their painkillers, and unused pills laying around in people’s medicine cabinets are thought to contribute to America’s escalating opioid epidemic, which killed more than 42,000 people in 2016. Take-back programs won’t solve the problem, but they’re at least a good start: Last year, the DEA reported that 456 tons of prescriptions were collected at more than 5,300 sites.