Nearly 24,000 Pills Collected In Robertson County Pill Round-Up

By: Alex Lotz Email
By: Alex Lotz Email

What do you do with your old medication? New local organizations are gaining popularity and are offering a safe way to dispose of medicine properly.

"The Drug Enforcement Administration saw that there was a problem with pill abuse going on and that there was no collection sites," said Michael Chism with the Robertson County Community Coalition.

With the help of the DEA, Robertson County Community Coalition holds an annual pill round-up collecting both over the counter and prescription medicines.

"We want to decrease in the number of kids getting pills," Chism said. "That's the most important thing we look for is that this is having an impact on youth pill abuse."

Chism said the availability and access to medication has skyrocketed, making it easier than ever for prescription abuse.

"The pills need to come out of the house because that's where the youth are acquiring them," Chism said.

Three years after they started the pill round-up, they reached a new record in April and collected over 100 pounds of pills from two locations.

"I mean that's like a small person worth of just pills and that doesn't include the bottles, that's just pills," Chism said.

Out of the nearly 50 people who dropped off medication, the coalition received nearly 24,000 pills. That's over a thousand more than they collected in October during their last round-up.

"We are pretty happy to be removing them from the streets," Chism said.

After the medications are dropped off, the DEA takes the thousands of pills to Houston to be incinerated and the prescription bottles are recycled.

"To get 100 pounds of pills is really significant, because it's a small area," Chism said. "We know that it's happening everywhere and everyone is taking part of these collections, but we are really proud of Robertson County."

Chism said people drop off the medicine for three different reasons: the loss of a family member, the medicine is expired or simply that they don't need it anymore.

The next Drug Take Back Day will be in the fall.

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