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Taking back unwanted drugs

Staff Photo: Erin Evans

Staff Photo: Erin Evans

Covington Police Department Lt. Al Miller tosses several bottles of outdated prescriptions into the bin which will be used Saturday to collect unwanted prescription drugs from citizens. Both the CPD and the Newton County Sheriff's Office, in conjunction with the Drug Enforcement Administration, is participating in the "Take Back" campaign Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Anyone with expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs is asked to drop them off either at Wal-mart SuperCenter on Industrial Boulevard or at CPD headquarters on Oak Street. Organizers say that medicines that languish in home medicine cabinets are high susceptible to misuse and 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 a 2009 study. Also, many dispose of unused medicine by flushing it down the toilet or throwing it away -- both potential safety and health hazards.