Prince William Times reports that today is National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, which encourages United States residents to safely dispose of old or unused prescription drugs at a nearby collection site. According to WGAL, anyone can find the closest collection sites by entering their zip code at the Drug Enforcement Agency's website.
Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring is urging the state's residents to participate in the effort, and law-enforcement agencies, community partners and members of the attorney general's office will be at multiple locations throughout the state to accept medications.
In a press release, Herring stated that prescription opioids like OxyContin and Vicodin are at the highest risk for improper disposal.
"Far too often, opioid addiction starts at the home when unused prescription drugs that have been left around the house fall into the hands of someone who could misuse or abuse them."He also highlighted the importance of disposing of unneeded prescription drugs, which he calls a simple but important step that anyone can take to combat Virginia's "devastating" opioid epidemic.
"One of the easiest ways to prevent abuse is to dispose of these drugs safely."The attorney general added that unused prescriptions are "potentially dangerous."
According to a National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) report, there were 1,130 opioid-related overdose deaths in Virginia in 2016, which comes in at 13.5 deaths per 100,000 persons. These numbers put the state's opioid death rate above the national average — but not by much.Herring previously filed a lawsuit against Purdue Pharma, the distributor of OxyContin, for perpetrating the "lies that helped create and prolong (the) opioid crisis."
As The Inquisitr reported, New York State Attorney General Letitia James filed a lawsuit against the Sackler family in late March. The Sacklers own Purdue Pharma and have come under fire for allegations that they fueled the rising opioid epidemic.
"We found that pharmaceutical manufacturers and distributors engaged in years of deceptive marketing about the risks of opioids and failed to exercise their basic duty to report suspicious behavior, leading to the crisis we are living with today."Many of the lawsuits against the Sackler families name eight in particular: Richard, Jonathan, Mortimer, Kathe, David, Beverly, and Theresa Sackler, as well as Ilene Sackler Lefcourt. They are part of one of the wealthiest families in the United States and are accused of misleading doctors and patients, as well as ignoring evidence of OxyContin's abuse potential.
In response to James' lawsuit, the Sackler family "strongly" denied the allegations, claiming that some of the lawsuits against them are publicity stunts.