B & B partners with SCAMHC for drug take-back day

By Staff Reports

On April 27, B & B Discount Drugs, in collaboration with the South Central Alabama Mental Health Center (SCAMHC), hosted a successful Drug Take Back Day. Citizens were encouraged to bring in both prescription and non-prescription medications, as well as vaping products for proper disposal. The event aimed to provide a safe and responsible means of disposing of unused medications, while also raising awareness about the dangers of prescription drug abuse. 

Michael Clemons, prevention specialist with SCAMHC, served as “boots on the ground” during the event.

“When customers bring expired/unused prescription medication, I educate them on how to properly store and dispose of their medications in their home along with giving them a pamphlet that details the information I communicate to them,” Clemons said. “After the pills are collected, they are weighed and disposed of properly by being incinerated by the company that has partnered with South Central Alabama Mental Health. At B & B Discount Drugs, on April 27, 2024, from 8:00 a.m. until 12:00 p.m. there were 9.3lbs collected. We also take up any vapes that any one might feel the need to turn in during the time we have the Prescription Drug Take Back and there were some vapes that were turned in during this event.”

Clemons said that he will be working with local law enforcement to have a unwanted prescription drug box placed in Luverne to be used between local take back days. 

“Citizens can also drop off any expired/unused medications at their local pharmacies as well and the pharmacy will either hold them until the next Prescription Drug Take Back event at their pharmacy or call me to come pick up. We also now have prescription lock boxes available to those who desire one to help safely store their medication from the reach of anyone other than themselves in their home.”

Prescription drug abuse is the fastest-growing drug problem in America according to Clemons. 

“Every day, nearly 2,500 teens abuse prescription drugs for the first time. Often they get these drugs from someone’s medicine cabinet; drugs that are past their expiration date and forgotten by the owners.”

The initiative was part of the National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, a nationwide effort to provide a safe and convenient method for individuals to dispose of unwanted medications. Nearly 50 locations across the state participated in the event.

In an April news release from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency, Medical Association of Alabama President Dr. Amanda Williams emphasized the importance of safely disposing of old or expired prescription drugs.

“Old, unwanted, or expired prescription drugs too often become a gateway to addiction or accidental overdose,” Williams said. “Take Back Day is a safe, convenient and responsible way to permanently remove these drugs so they can never be misused or abused.”

United States Attorney Prim F. Escalona also underscored the significance of proper medication disposal in combating the national opioid epidemic.

“The national opioid epidemic devastates families every day,” Escalona said. “We can help protect our loved ones by properly disposing of unused, unwanted, or expired prescription drugs in our possession. It’s free, easy, and anonymous.”