Together, we can save lives if we properly dispose of expired or unused prescription drugs. Too many addicts and curious teens can get prescription drugs from the family medicine cabinet or from friends who no longer use the medication they were prescribed.

In recent years, more Ohioans have died from accidental prescription drug overdoses than auto accidents. As the national death toll from prescription drug overdoses doubled, the rate of overdoses tripled in Ohio. Ohio’s death rate due to unintentional drug poisoning increased more than 350 percent from 1999 to 2008. Oxycodone and other opioids caused more overdoses in Ohio in 2008 than heroin and cocaine combined.

So, it’s imperative that we do a better job of getting rid of powerful prescription narcotics. Last week, I visited a site in Zanesville, Ohio participating in National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day. Held on September 29th, this day allowed Ohioans to safely disposing of unused prescription drugs.

It’s especially important to dispose of prescription pain medications, such as Oxycodone, morphine, and methadone – which are largely responsible for increasing numbers of overdoses and deaths in Ohio.

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