Acting Special Agent In Charge Thomas Hinojosa will be participating in a National Prescription Take Back Press Conference, April 27, 2011 at 2:30 p.m., at the DEA Houston Field Office, located at 1433 West Loop South, in the 1 st floor training room. He, along with invited guest Harris County District Attorney, Patricia Lykos, Assistant Houston Police Chief, John P. Trevino, Harris County Sheriff, Adrian Garcia and United States Attorney for the Southern District of Texas, Jose Angel Moreno along with other invited guests will be available to take questions from reporters in attendance about the April 30th National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, the safe and secure controlled substance drug disposal and DEA’s efforts to prevent prescription drug diversion.
(HOUSTON, TX) The Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) second National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day will take place on Saturday, April 30, 2011 at more than 5,000 sites nationwide. In The Greater Houston Metropolitan area there will be 30 established sites with approximately 100 sites throughout South Texas. The free event will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Government, community, public health and law enforcement partners at these sites will be working together to collect expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs that are potentially dangerous if left in the family’s medicine cabinet.
Last September, Americans throughout the nation turned in over 242,000 pounds of prescription drugs at nearly 4,100 sites operated by more than 3,000 of the DEA’s state and local law enforcement partners. Over 3,000 pounds of prescription drugs were turned in at 23 sites throughout the Greater Houston Metropolitan area and over 6100 pounds or prescription drugs were collected throughout South Texas.
Collection sites in every local community can be found by going to www.dea.gov and clicking on the “Got Drugs?” banner at the top of the home page, which connects to a database that citizens can search by zip code, city or county. This site is continuously updated with new take-back locations. In addition, interested media can now go to: www.nationaltakebackday.com to download a public service announcement about the initiative.
This initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue. Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse. Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are alarmingly high—more Americans currently abuse prescription drugs than the number of those using cocaine, hallucinogens, and heroin combined, according to the 2009 National Survey on Drug Use and Health. Studies show that individuals that abuse prescription drugs often obtained them from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet. In addition, many Americans do not know how to properly dispose of their unused medicine, often flushing them down the toilet or throwing them away – both potential safety and health hazards.
Other participants in this initiative include the United States Attorney’s Office, Harris County District Attorney’s Office, Houston Police Department, Tomball Police Department, Baytown Police Department, Bellaire Police Department, Friendswood Police Department, Humble Police Department, Jersey Village Police Department, Lufkin Police Department, Memorial Villages Police Department, Shenandoah Police Department, Sugarland Police Department, Texas city Police Department, Webster Police Department, Willis Police Department, Harris County Constables Office Precinct 4, Harris County Constables Office Precinct 1, Harris County Sheriff’s Office, Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office, Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office, The State of Texas Pharmacy Board, Texas Department of Public Safety, Willis Police Department, Houston Independent School District Police Department, Katy Independent School District Police Department, The Mayor’s Office of Public Safety and Homeland Security, Southeast Harris County Community Coalition, Bay Area Council on Drugs & Alcohol, Higher Dimension – Office of Empowerment, Angelina Beautiful Clean, Roots of Change Coalition and The Coalition of Behavior Health Services.