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WASHINGTON — Saturday is the Drug Enforcement Administration's National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day, and the country's largest lobbying group representing the generic drug industry is expressing its support.
The Generic Pharmaceutical Association said its support for the program was part of a commitment to work with such stakeholders as doctors, parents, law enforcement, lawmakers and industry to try and stop diversion of prescription drugs in the United States. According to the 2009 National Study of Drug Use and Health, the problem of prescription drug abuse primarily stems from drugs that are legally prescribed and available in the home.
"With recent studies showing that as many as 70% of people abusing prescription drugs were doing so with products they obtained from a friend or relative, it is imperative that we act now to ensure that these medications are not falling into the wrong hands," GPhA president and CEO Ralph Neas said. "The DEA's National Prescription Take-Back Day is an excellent example of the multi-stakeholder collaboration that is needed to tackle this problem."
The DEA program will involve nearly 4,000 state and local law enforcement agencies and will collect expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs. The first two National Prescription Take Back Days collected more than 309 tons of pills, according to the GPhA.