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Massachusetts Water Resources Authority


October 22, 2021


Ria Convery
(617) 788-1105,

National Prescription Drug Takeback Day: Saturday October 23

Banner for Drug Takeback

On Saturday, October 23, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration will give the public an opportunity to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs.  Bring your pills for disposal to a dropbox location near you. (The DEA cannot accept liquids or needles or sharps, only pills or patches.)  The service is free and anonymous, no questions asked.

This past spring, Americans turned in nearly 420 tons (more than 839,000 pounds) of prescription drugs at nearly 5,060 sites operated by the DEA and 4,425 of its state and local law enforcement partners. Overall, in its 20 previous Take Back events, DEA and its partners have taken in more than 14.5 million pounds—approximately 7,262 tons—of pills.

This initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue.  Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse. Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are alarmingly high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs.  Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet. In addition, Americans are now advised that their usual methods for disposing of unused medicines—flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash—both pose potential safety and health hazards.

For more information about the disposal of prescription drugs or about the October 23 Take Back Day event, go to


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Updated October 22, 2021