Hundreds of Pounds of Medication Collected at Bi-Annual Event - KHGI-TV/KWNB-TV/KHGI-CD-Grand Island, Kearney, Hastings

Hundreds of Pounds of Medication Collected at Bi-Annual Event

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Six million Americans abuse prescription drugs, according to a national survey.

That's one of the reasons the Drug Enforcement Agency is teaming up with local law enforcement at locations across Nebraska and the country to take back old prescriptions.

About 215 pounds of pills were hauled away from Grand Island's Saint Francis Medical Center Saturday.

About 20 bottles were Dan Lind's.

"We have grandkids and they come to visit once in a while," he said. "We sure don't want them getting into those pills."

According to the Foundation for a Drug Free World, each day 2,500 U.S. kids age 12 to 17 abuse a prescription pain reliever for the first time.

Most of Lind's grandkids fall in that age range.

"They're old enough to know better, but when you get to be 13,14 years old the peer pressure, I think sometimes leads you to do something that you shouldn't be doing," said Lind.

Saint Francis Medical Center officials say dumping medication is also a concern.

"The reason we want to keep them out of the landfill or even flushing them down the toilet is to keep them out of the water supply because that can be harmful to our water," said Cathy Brockmeier.

The last take back event yielded 742,500 pounds of medication nationwide, taking in 50 percent more pills than the previous Take Back Day.

Here in Nebraska, drop-offs don't seem to be slowing either.

"It's pretty amazing the amount of people that come in and the things that they're able to bring in," said Brockmeier.

Those drugs will now be incinerated.

If you missed the take back event you can now drop off old prescriptions at the Hall County-Grand Island Law Enforcement Center any time.

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