ONALASKA, Wisconsin (WXOW) – The La Crosse County Prevention Network hosted four medication drop off days as part of National Take-Back Day Saturday.
It's was way to drive up and drop off unused or expired medication.
Sgt. Jasson Jobe, who ran the drop off site at the Onalaska Police Department, said the event is a way for medication to be disposed of properly, preventing it from potentially getting into the wrong hands and being abused.
"Prescription drugs, (the) addiction to it, could just be life destroying," Jobe said. "It may even be a drug that is a gateway to them to use a more hardcore street drug like heroin or even methamphetamine."
A study from the Office of National Drug Control Policy shows more than 70 percent of Americans misusing painkillers get those drugs from family or friends.
Nearly three out of four prescription drug overdoses are caused by prescription painkillers, the Center for Disease Control reported.
"Nobody should come in and say, ‘We need to stop prescribing medications,' because when it's appropriate, absolutely. The difficulty (that) comes in is how to draw that line, or where to draw that line, once somebody starts to become addicted," said Keith Lease, executive director of the Coulee Council on Addictions.
Lease said medication drop offs are the best excuse to clear out a medicine cabinet.
"We want to be able to dispose of them properly to help keep them out of the hands that are gonna abuse them," Jobe said.
Jobe said about 550 cars passed through the police department's drop off site; the number of participants up from last year.
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