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Prescription drug drop off box now in Turlock
Rx Drop-Off Box
A prescription drug drop off box is now available to the Turlock community in the lobby of the Public Safety Center at 244 N. Broadway. - photo by Photo Contributed


Those individuals in need of a place to safely discard expired, unused or unwanted and potentially dangerous prescription medications now have an option to do so in Turlock.

For the community’s convenience, a prescription drug drop box is now located in the Public Safety Facility lobby at 244 N. Broadway. The service is free, anonymous, and no questions are asked.

Only prescription medication in pill form or liquid will be accepted. For the safety of the department’s staff, syringes are not accepted in the drug drop box.

The prescription drug drop box comes to Turlock through a partnership between the police department and the Stanislaus County Behavioral Health and Recovery Services.

The collection box is an extension of the nationwide drug take back events sponsored by the Drug Enforcement Administration. Over the years the DEA has collected more than 4.1 million pounds of prescription medications.

Studies indicate that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from home medicine cabinets. The growing number of drug drop boxes around the country is having an effect on the abuse of prescription drugs. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s National Survey on Drug Use and Health for 2013 found that among youths aged 12 to 17, the rate of current nonmedical use of prescription-type drugs declined from 4.0 percent in 2002 and 2003 to 2.2 percent in 2013. The rate of nonmedical pain reliever use among youths also declined from 3.2 percent in 2002 and 2003 to 1.7 percent in 2013.

Among persons aged 12 or older in 2012-2013 who used pain relievers nonmedically in the past 12 months, 53. percent got the drug they used most recently from a friend or relative for free, and 10.6 percent bought the drug from a friend or relative. Another 21.2 percent reported that they got the drug through a prescription from one doctor. An annual average of 4.3 percent got pain relievers from a drug dealer or other stranger, and 0.1 percent bought them on the Internet, according to the survey.

Among young adults aged 18 to 25, the rate of current nonmedical use of prescription-type drugs in 2013 was 4.8 percent, which was similar to the rates in 2011 (5.0 percent) and 2012 (5.3 percent), but it was lower than the rates in the years from 2002 to 2010 (ranging from 5.5 to 6.5 percent).

The survey found that in 2013, an estimated 2.8 million persons aged 12 or older used an illicit drug for the first time within the past 12 months. About 1 in 5 initiated with nonmedical use of prescription drugs (20.6 percent, including 12.5 percent with pain relievers, 5.2 percent with tranquilizers, 2.7 percent with stimulants, and 0.2 percent with sedatives).

Studies have shown that disposing of prescription medications by flushing them down a toilet or throwing them in the garbage can have a negative impact on the environment.