New Castle News

May 23, 2013

County starts drug takeback program

By Staff
New Castle News

NEW CASTLE — Lawrence County’s district attorney is initiating a drug takeback program for local residents to turn in unused or expired medications.

People wanting to get rid of all drugs —prescription or otherwise — may turn them in to the district attorney’s office in the courthouse between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m., Mondays through Fridays.

District Attorney Joshua Lamancusa said the program will be ongoing, year-round, in an effort to reduce the amount of excess or unused prescription pain medication so it does not fall into the wrong hands.

There is no charge associated with the program and all medication or drugs taken to the his office will be destroyed in an environmentally safe manner, he said.

The program is open to any resident of the county.

According to a prepared statement from Lamancusa’s office, the White House and the Centers for Disease Control have declared prescription pain medication abuse an epidemic in the United States.

More deaths are caused annually from prescription pain medication abuse than by the combined total of cocaine and heroin overdoses.

Misuse and abuse of prescription pain medication are responsible for more than 475,000 emergency room visits and nearly 36,000 deaths each year.

The majority of overdose cases involve people who were not prescribed the medication in the first place, but who obtained it from illegal sources or from the medicine cabinets of family members or friends.