Michigan Opioid Prescribing Engagement Network and partners in 27 locations in 17 counties bring in largest haul to date
ANN ARBOR, Mich. – On April 28, Michigan residents in 17 counties had a chance to get opioids and other unused and expired prescription medicines out of their medicine cabinets through 27 simultaneous events held around the state. The collective effort resulted in safely removing 2,000+ pounds of medication, including approximately 54,000 opioids.
The statewide effort is made possible by local partnerships with the University of Michigan’s Michigan Opioid Prescribing Engagement Network (Michigan OPEN) and healthcare organizations, law enforcement and community organizations. The Spring 2018 event tripled the amount of Take Back locations from the Fall 2017 event and tripled the amount of opioids removed from Michigan communities.
“We are thrilled with the results on our Spring event,” said Dr. Chad Brummett, co-director of Michigan OPEN. “These events make our communities safer for everyone by removing these pills from potential diversion while also increasing awareness in the community about safe medication disposal.”
Michigan-OPEN holds community opioid and medication take-back events twice a year. These events provide a safe process for disposing of unused medications in order to protect communities, children, and the environment.
Facts about prescription drug misuse
The United States is currently experiencing an epidemic of prescription drug misuse and abuse. Since 1999, overdose deaths involving prescription opioids have quadrupled. Every day, 115 Americans die from an opioid-related overdose – more than the number of people killed in car accidents or by guns. Every 10 minutes a child visits the emergency room for medication poisoning, and 12.5 million people age 12 and older misused opioids in the last year. Three in five teens say prescription pain medication is easy to get from their parents’ medicine cabinet.