How to get rid of your unwanted prescription drugs

Published on October 27, 2023 at 2:47 pm

Saturday is National Drug Take Back Day, when you can get rid of your unwanted or expired prescription drugs so they don’t fall into the wrong hands.

According to the latest numbers from the Florida Department of Health, Duval County ranks fifth in the state for opioid overdose-related deaths. The county averaged 59.8 overdose deaths per 100,000 people, according to the figures from 2021. The only countries with a higher rate were Highlands, Volusia, Escambia and Pinellas. 

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Dr. Alison Mauk with HCA Florida Memorial Hospital says events like Drug Take Back Day help to save people’s lives.

“8.7 million people misuse prescription pain relievers each year, and honestly a way that they obtain them is in like a prescription bottle that’s left in their friend’s medicine cabinet or their grandparents’ and they open the cabinet and they’re like ‘Hmm, maybe I’ll try this,’” Mauk said. 

The National Drug Take Back Day ihappens in April and October each year. During the previous drug take back day, more than 32,000 pounds of items were collected at 220 collection sites across Florida, according to Attorney General Ashley Moody.

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You can go to to find a location near you in Northeast Florida. The event is scheduled from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

author image Reporter, WJCT News 89.9 email Steven Ponson has six years of experience covering news in Jacksonville and Northeast Florida. Prior to arriving on the First Coast, Steven also worked in radio in Orlando. He attended the University of Central Florida where he earned a degree in radio and television. Steven has been a reporter, producer, anchor and board operator. Outside of work, Steven loves to watch sports, cook delicious cajun food (as any good Louisiana native does) and spend time outdoors.

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