Drug Take Back Day events taking place across southwest, central Virginia on Saturday

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(Photo: Courtesy MGN Image)

(WFXR) — Time to clean out your cabinets and drawers of expired, unused, and unwanted medications! In honor of National Drug Take Back Day, law enforcement agencies, healthcare providers, and community organizations around the Commonwealth are partnering up to collect those medications at convenient locations for safe disposal.

According to the City of Roanoke, these free and anonymous events being held across southwest and central Virginia are part of the nationwide prescription drug “Take-Back” program that aims to prevent prescription pill abuse, theft, and environmental concerns. 

This initiative addresses vital public safety and public health issues. Medications that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse and abuse. Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. and in the valley are increasing at alarming rates as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs. Studies show that 90% of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet. In fact, the majority of commonly abused drugs by teenagers are prescription medications.  

In addition, flushing medications down the drain can result in trace amounts of pharmaceuticals showing up in our nation’s waterways. This initiative offers a safe and convenient disposal option for the valley residents. All medicine collected at these events is burned in the state’s medical incinerators. By working together to provide a free, secure place to dispose of unwanted medications, the DEA, law enforcement agencies, RAYSAC, the Prevention Council, and Western Virginia Water Authority are helping prevent drug abuse, protecting our valley’s waterways and making our communities safer.    

City of Roanoke

In addition to prescription pills and patches, you can drop off vaping devices and cartridges — as long as the lithium ion batteries have been removed — and veterinarian medications at any of the collection drug take-back sites listed below from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 23, unless otherwise stated.

However, officials from a number of these localities say that no syringes/needles/sharps, liquids, or aerosols will be accepted.

If you do not see your locality listed below, you can used the official National Drug Take Back Day website to find a nearby collection site.

Alleghany County and Covington

The Alleghany County Sheriff’s Office and LewisGale Hospital Alleghany say you can safely and easily dispose of old or unused medications at either the Walmart on Thacker Avenue in Covington, or at CVS and Kroger in Clifton Forge on Saturday

Amherst County

According to the Amherst County Sheriff’s Office, deputies will be set up outside of Hometown Pharmacy at Amelon Square in Amherst on Saturday to college medications. There will also be opioid overdose education and free Narcan provided on site.

Appomattox County

The Appomattox County Sheriff’s Office says St. Andre Austin will be on site at the prescription drop-off location Farmers Bank along Old Courthouse Road in Appomattox — along with members of Virginia State Police and Horizon Behavioral Health — to answer any questions. This site will also provide opioid overdose education and free Narcan.

Bedford County

On Saturday, Bedford County Public Schools says that Horizon Behavioral Health will join local law enforcement — including the Bedford Police Department — at the Tractor Supply Company on Lynchburg Salem Turnpike for residents to dispose of medications and receive valuable resources to safeguard the community.

Botetourt County

According to the Botetourt County Sheriff’s Office, you can drop off your unused or outdated medications at two locations in Botetourt County from on Saturday:

  • Penelope at 52 Kingston Drive in Daleville
  • Solomon’s Mission in Buchanan

Buena Vista

Members of the Buena Vista Police Department will be collecting medications at the CVS Pharmacy along E. Midland Trail on Saturday.

Charlotte County

The Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office plans to host their Drug Take Back Day event at the sheriff’s office, but only from 10 a.m. to noon on Saturday.

Danville

The Regional Alliance for Substance Abuse Prevention and the Danville Police Department will be collecting medications at Centra Medical Group, 414 Park Avenue in Danville on Saturday, even offering a goodie bag with a free medication lockbox, disposal kit information, and more for each participant.

“Please note we cannot accept liquids, aerosol sprays, or anything with needles (including EpiPens), ” the Facebook event description states. “Medications can be dropped off in original packaging; our law enforcement partners will take custody of the medications at the end of the event and take them directly to be incinerated therefore no identifying information needs to be marked out.”

Franklin County

Members of the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office and the Rocky Mount Police Department are teaming up for Saturday’s Drug Take Back event, which will be held at two sites in the county.

That includes the Westlake Substation on Booker T. Washington Highway in Hardy, as well as the Rocky Mount Police Department.

Galax

Officers will be set up outside the Galax Police Department on Saturday to collect unused and expired medications and safely dispose of them.

Giles County

Community members can drop off their unwanted prescription meds outside of the Giles County Sheriff’s Office on Saturday. In addition, the Pearisburg Junior Woman’s Club will be on hand to collect batteries for Recycling.

Grayson County

The Grayson County Sheriff’s Office says their Drug Take Back event will take place from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, but did not list a location.

Lexington

The Lexington Police Department says you can turn in your unused or expired prescriptions safely and anonymously on Saturday at the CVS on East Nelson Street.

Lynchburg

The Lynchburg Police Department is partnering up with Horizon Behavioral Health for the 20th annual National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, which will take place at the Horizon Behavioral Health parking lot on Langhorne Road. Officers will also conduct free child seat safety checks during the event.

Martinsville

On Saturday, the Drug-Free MHC Coalition, Martinsville Fire-EMS, and the Martinsville Police Department are working together to help people rid their homes of expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs. Those medications will be collected for disposal at the Martinsville Fire Department on West Church Street.

If you are unable to attend Saturday’s drive-thru event, you can visit one of the permanent drop box location at the Henry County Jail or the Martinsville Police Department between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.

Montgomery County

LewisGale Montgomery Regional Hospital — located on Main Street in Blacksburg — will have a collection site on Saturday for prescription drugs and vape devices, so long as there is no internal battery.

However, unlike other Drug Take-Back events, the Blacksburg Police Department says they will also accept non-prescription drugs, including pills, liquids, patches, creams, etc.

Pulaski County

The Pulaski County Sheriff’s Office will collect unused and expired medications at the Kroger on Lee Highway in Fairlawn from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday. Community members can also drop off any illegal narcotics, no questions asked.

Meanwhile, the Pulaski Police Department and LewisGale Hospital Pulaski will be set up at the Food City on Bob White Boulevard from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday to collect prescription drugs.

Radford

If you want to clear out your medicine cabinet, you can drop off a number of the contents at the Radford City Police Department on Saturday, no questions asked and no identification required.

The department will accept prescription medications; over-the-counter solid-dosage medications, such as pills, tablets, or capsules; and liquid products, like prescription cough syrups, as long as they are sealed in the original container.

However, intravenous solutions, injectables, needles, and illicit substances like methamphetamine and marijuana will not be accepted.

Roanoke City

Roanoke City has three convenient parking lot locations for people to drop off prescriptions on Saturday, according to the Roanoke Police Department:

  • CVS at Towers Mall
  • Solutions Center at 2328 Melrose Avenue
  • CVS at 9th Street

Roanoke County

The Roanoke County Fire and Rescue Department says there will be seven places in Roanoke County where you can turn in unwanted medications:

  • Kroger at Tanglewood Mall
  • Kroger on Valley Gateway Boulevard
  • Kroger on Hardy Road
  • Walgreens at Electric Road and Brambleton Avenue
  • Walmart Neighborhood Market on Plantation Road
  • Clearbrook Walmart
  • LewisGale Cave Spring ER on Ogden Road

Rockbridge County

Expired or unused pharmaceuticals can be taken to the CVS parking lots at 2148 East Midland Trail in Buena Vista and at 506 East Nelson Street in Lexington between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 23 to be properly disposed of.

Salem

According to the Salem Police Department, officers will be collecting outdated and unused medications at the Goodwill Retail and Super Shoes Parking lot on Main Street on Saturday.

In addition, the Roanoke Valley SPCA says you can turn in your unused, unwanted, and expired medications — for both humans and pets — at the Virginia State Police Headquarters and the Salem VA Medical Center.

Wythe County

Authorities will be set up at the Wythe County Sheriff’s Office on Saturday to collect and dispose of medications from community members.

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