In an effort to safely assist the public in disposing of their unwanted and/or expired prescription medications as well as their over-the-counter medicines, the Jefferson Township Police Department offers a permanent and convenient Drug Take-Back Program that’s simple and safe.

According to the National Association of  Boards of Pharmacy, many homes end up with unwanted or expired prescriptions and over-the-counter medications. Old prescriptions left in medicine cabinets or elsewhere in the home can often be an easy source for those who would like to abuse prescription medications or give curious children and pets an opportunity for accidental ingestion that can result in terrible consequences.  People taking numerous medications on a daily basis can also be confused if unneeded medicine is anywhere around the home.

NABP reports that nearly 19 million Americans used prescription drugs, such as pain relievers, tranquilizers, and stimulants for non-medical reasons last year.  Prescription drug misuse and abuse is an issue that touches people of all socio-economic backgrounds and age, and Jefferson Township is certainly no exception.

Because so many drugs are easily accessible today there is an increase in the abuse of prescription and over-the-counter medications by young people and adults alike.  The most frightening statistics, according to the 2013 National Survey on Drug Use and Health indicates that more than 22 million teens ages 12 to 17 reported abusing prescription drugs. Those are indeed frightening statistics.

So, eliminating unused and unwanted medications from your home not only helps to keep your family and community safe, but proper disposal of toxic medications also helps towards reducing the carbon footprint in our environment.

Approved items that can be dropped off in the Jefferson Township Drug Take-Back disposal unit include prescription and over-the-counter medications, vitamins, medication supplies, veterinary medications, and narcotics.  Non-approved items include any type of needles, IV bags, personal care products, hydrogen peroxide, inhalers, thermometers and other mercury-containing items, and liquids.

For your convenience, the 24-hour drop off self-contained unit is located in the lobby of the Jefferson Township Police Department (just off the main lobby of the Jefferson Township Municipal Building), 1033 Weldon Road, Oak Ridge, NJ.  You do not require any assistance – disposal is self-explanatory and simple!  Once approved medications are deposited in the unit, you can rest assured that these items will be disposed of properly according to safety and environmental standards.

For more information on safely disposing of medications and safely using medications, visit https://nabp.pharmacy/initiatives/awarxe/dispose-safely/

Is it time to clean out your medicine cabinet, drawers, closets, etc. where you store your medications?

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Carol was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York and moved to Jefferson Township with her husband in 1976. She initially joined the Garden Club of Milton, eventually serving as President. She was a co-founder of the ABC Mothers Group, active in the local PTAs, Girl Scouts, and Cub Scouts. She worked for AIM Newspapers as a reporter and eventually became its Editor. Currently, she is President of the Jefferson Arts Committee and the Recreation Program Coordinator in the Jefferson Township Recreation Department. She can be reached at carol.punturieri@thejeffersonchronicle.com.

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