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Marisa Maez
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National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day

October 23, 2020 - Community Programs - Safety

National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day was created to provide a safe, convenient and responsible way to dispose of prescription drugs.  It is also an opportunity to remind people of various ways to appropriately dispose of drugs. 

The New Mexico Department of Health urges New Mexicans to bring expired, unwanted, or unused prescription drugs to collection sites throughout the state on Saturday, October 24th in conjunction with the US Drug Enforcement Administration’s 19th National Prescription Drug Take Back Day. Prescription medications can be brought to collection sites statewide from 10:00AM to 2:00PM for safe disposal. The service is free and anonymous.

“Here in New Mexico, we are working hard to fight prescription drug misuse and the impact it has on our communities.  We need families and individuals to help – by not keeping expired or unused medications in the home where they can be misused,” said Governor Michelle Lujan-Grisham. “Risk of misusing medication increases dramatically by not safely disposing of old medications remaining in the house”

“Prescription drug misuse remains an important public safety and public health issue in New Mexico,” said Department of Health Acting Secretary Billy Jimenez. “National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day is a great way to dispose of unused prescription drugs to help make sure your home is safer and to prevent a potential accidental overdose.”

New Mexicans are advised that common methods for disposing of unused medicines by flushing them down the toilet or throwing them directly in the trash pose potential safety and health hazards. Instead, safe drug disposal methods at home consist of using simple drug disposal kits or by taking the prescription drugs out of their containers, mixing the drugs with kitty litter or used coffee grounds, placing the mixture into a sealable container or bag, scratching out personal information on the old containers, and then disposing those items in the trash. Unused drugs can also be returned to most pharmacies and to some police and fire stations.

Visit the Take Back Day website to find the nearest collection site nearest you. For year-round disposal at a variety of locations, check out the location finder at the New Mexico Human Services Department’s A Dose of Reality website.

During last year’s take back event, New Mexicans turned in 6,863 pounds – more than three tons - of medication to law enforcement and other partners across New Mexico.

Reducing drug overdose deaths is a major priority for Governor Michelle Lujan-Grisham. Working with the Department of Health, the Governor has taken a comprehensive approach to fighting opioid abuse in New Mexico, including improving prescribing practices ensuring broad access to Naloxone, strengthening prescription monitoring laws, and alternative pain management modalities. For information on prescription drug safety visit the Opioid Safety and Harm Reduction sections on the NMDOH website and at the Another Way and A Dose of Reality websites.

Event Flyer


Versión en Español

En un esfuerzo para hacer que nuestros comunicados de prensa sean más accesibles, también tenemos disponibles una versión en español. Por favor presione el enlace de abajo para acceder a la traducción.

Día Nacional para Devolver Drogas Recetadas