Saturday is National Drug Take Back Day


April 25th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The U-S Drug Enforcement Agency is working with state and local officials to conduct the “National Prescription Drug Take Back Day” this Saturday. The acting director of the Iowa Office of Drug Control Policy, Dale Woolery, says it’s not uncommon for people to have old prescription drugs collecting dust in their medicine cabinets. “We don’t all necessarily use every pill that gets prescribed and especially with prescription pain killers. They work great when you need them, but at some point you may not need them anymore. And if you’ve got some sitting around, it’s time to get rid of them, now is a good opportunity to get rid of them,” Woolery says.

He says there will be approximately 100 sites around the state set up to take the unused medicine and safely get rid of it.  The take back day is part of the spring cleaning mindset, and you should check for expired or unused medications, now is the time to get rid of them in an environmentally friendly way. Woolery says some people might throw expired prescription drugs in the garbage, or flush them down the toilet — but doing that can allow those drugs to cause environmental problems. And he says clearing out old drugs ensures they aren’t misused. “We know that in Iowa, like the rest of the nation, we have a growing problem with prescription drug abuse that leads to some addiction, and tragically, ultimately can lead to an overdose death. And the major source for those prescription drugs that are abused, unfortunately happens to be the medicine cabinet,” according to Woolery.

This is the fourth federal take back day. Over the last two years, more than 10-thousand (10,000) pounds of unused or unwanted or expired medicines have been disposed of by Iowans so far,” Woolery says. Most sites will be open from 10 a-m. until two p-m on Saturday. To find a collection site near you, go to: and look for the take back link.

In the KJAN listening area, here are the drop-off sites for disposal of your prescription medications:

Audubon – Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church,326 Leroy Street  (Sponsored by the Audubon Police Dept.)

Carter Lake City Hall – 950 Locust Street. (Carter Lake P.D. sponsored)

Council Bluffs – Walgreens, 535 East Broadway (Council Bluffs P.D.)

Glenwood – Glenwood Police Dept., 209 Sharp St.

Guthrie Center – Dowd Drug, 307 State St., (Guthrie Co. Sheriff’s Dept. sponsored)

Manning – Manning Pharmacy, 317 Main St. (Manning P.D.)

Winterset – Farmer & Merchants Motor Bank, 722 N. John Wayne Dr. (Winterset P.D.)

Note: More sites are added to the list daily, so check the DEA’s website mentioned above for the latest listings.

(Dar Danielson/Radio Iowa & Ric Hanson/KJAN)