COLUMBUS, Ga. (WRBL) – The West Central Health District announced it is partnering with MCSO to host a Drug Take Back event in celebration of National Prescription Drug Take Back Day.

On Saturday, interested individuals can visit the Columbus Health Department located at 5601 Veterans Parkway from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. to drop off unused or expired prescriptions and over-the-counter medications.

The West Central Health District says that it’s unfortunate when unused drugs “fall into the wrong hands,” and through hosting the event, the Columbus Health Department hopes to prevent similar occurrences.

“We have a big job to reduce substance abuse in our communities, and this is one way everyone can be a part of the solution to accidental overdoses,” Opioid and Substance Abuse Prevention Coordinator for the West Central Health District Jessica Ricks shared. “This is a community wide effort to help prevent misuse of medications.”

During a previous Drug Take Back event back in April, the West Central Health District said 332 tons of unused medications were collected from 4,455 collection sites across the country and that the Columbus area collected nearly 1700 pounds of medication.

To participate, the West Central Health District provided the following steps:

  • Find all medications in your residence and make sure they are securely.
  • Identify which medications are unwanted or have expired and make sure liquid medications are sealed in their original packaging.
  • Label the unwanted or expired medications and bring them to the Columbus Health Department.

The Columbus Health Department will also be giving away Narcan to participants. Narcan, according to the West Central Health District is a nasal spray that is used on adults and children experiencing an opioid overdose.

The drug takes effect within two minutes and eliminates to symptoms of opioid intoxication. Using Narcan allows for individuals to seek additional medical care from first responders and hospitals.