By Jeff Noble / Staff Writer
Kentucky State Police posts in London and Harlan will again join other KSP posts Saturday to give people a chance to “take back” unwanted or outdated prescription drugs and medicines.
It’s the fourth consecutive year for state police to team up with the federal Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) to remove old medicines, prescription drugs and other potentially dangerous controlled substances from home medicine cabinets.
Times for today’s “Take Back Day” are from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.
In London, a collection point will again be set up at the Laurel County Health Department in London, located at 525 Whitley Street (Ky. 363), about a mile off the Route 192 intersection near Lowe’s.
KSP Post 11 in London covers Laurel and Whitley counties, along with Clay, Pulaski, Rockcastle, Wayne and McCreary counties.
For Knox Countians, the collection point will be at State Police Post 10 in Harlan, located at 3319 U.S. 421 South.
KSP Post 10 in Harlan covers Knox County, as well as Bell and Harlan counties.
Trooper Lloyd Cochran, the Public Affairs Officer for KSP Post 11 in London, noted the program helps police with what’s been called “accidental dealers” — people who unknowingly give access to prescription or over-the-counter drugs, or have them in their homes and medicine cabinets.
“Those who wish to participate may dispose of their current or outdated medication either in its original container, or by removing the medication from its container and disposing of it directly into the disposal box at the collection point. If an original container is submitted, the individual should remove any identifying information from the prescription label,” Cochran said in a news release.
Last year’s event in London, held April 28, collected a total weight of 177.4 pounds of unwanted and outdated prescription drugs and old medications.
If you plan on participating in today’s “take back” at either London or Harlan, the Kentucky State Police offer these tips:
—All solid dosage pharmaceutical products and liquids in consumer containers may be accepted. Cough syrup and other liquid products should remain sealed in their original containers. You should make sure the cap, or caps, are tightly sealed to prevent leaks.
—Intravenous solutions, syringes and injectables will not be accepted because of the potential hazard posed by blood-borne pathogens.
—Illicit substances like marijuana or methamphetamine are not part of this initiative, and should not be placed in collection counters.
State Police add that one place medications should not be disposed of is at home in the toilet. They urge people not to flush medications in the toilet, but bring them to the collection points today where they can be properly disposed of.
Cochran noted at the end of today’s event, state police will seal the drug disposal boxes in accordance with agency policy and procedure, and store them until they’re turned over to the DEA.
For more information on Saturday’s “Take Back Day,” call KSP Post 10 in Harlan at 606-573-3131, or KSP Post 11 in London at 606-878-6622.