Residents can drop off unwanted, unused or expired medications to local law enforcement agencies Saturday as part of the National Prescription Drug Take Back Day.
The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration coordinates the event.
State Police Troop C, 4047 W. Park Ave., Gray, is participating from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Also from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., medications can be dropped off at the main entrance of Ochsner St. Anne Hospital, 4608 La. 1, Raceland. The Bayou Council on Alcoholism will also provide free prescription drug lock boxes at that location for residents to use at home.
Terrebonne General Medical Center will have a drop box available from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. inside its Medical Arts Building, 855 Belanger St.
The Houma Police Department, 500 Honduras St., is participating from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
For the Thibodaux Police Department, 1309 Canal Blvd., it will be an all-day event.
Thibodaux Police Cpl. David Melancon said children or people struggling with addiction could get hold of medications left around the home.
“Unwanted prescription medicine becomes forgotten prescription medicine if it’s just lying around the house,” he said. “It’s better to put it in a place that it can be properly destroyed.”
Thibodaux Police and Troop C also have prescription medication drop-off boxes available 24/7.
Trooper First Class Jesse LaGrange warned against flushing medications, which could be a public health hazard.
“We want to make sure it’s disposed of properly and not just lying around the house for someone to get to it, misuse it or possibly sell it,” he said.
Residents can also leave prescription medications from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays year-round in drop boxes at three Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office locations: Administrative Office, 200 Canal Blvd., Thibodaux; Criminal Operations Center, 805 Crescent Ave., Lockport; and South Lafourche Substation, 102 W. 91st St., Cut Off.
The Houma Police Department accepts medications from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. weekdays year-round.
All services are free, anonymous, and no questions are asked.
Liquids should be tightly sealed in their original containers, and no loose medication should be deposited. Intravenous solutions, injectable drugs and syringes are not accepted.
During the last Take Back Day in April, Americans turned in 450 tons of prescription medications at 5,500 sites.
According to the 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 6.4 million Americans abused prescription drugs. Most of those drugs were obtained from family and friends, often from home medicine cabinets.
-- Staff Writer Bridget Mire can be reached at 448-7639 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter @bridget_mire.