SACO, Maine — Maine residents will have the opportunity once again to participate in the National Prescription Drug Take Back Initiative on Saturday, April 27. This event, sponsored by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency and state and local agencies will enable residents throughout the state to dispose of unwanted or expired prescriptions and/or over-the-counter medications, safely and at no cost. The event will take place from 10 am to 2 pm at various locations throughout Maine; details at www.dea.gov.
Local disposal sites include:
-Biddeford: Public Works Recycling Center, 371 Hill Street
-Saco: Community Center, Franklin Street
-Old Orchard: New Police Station, 16 East Emerson Cummings Boulevard
-Lyman: Goodwin Mills Fire Station
-Kennebunk: Hannaford Supermarket, 65 Portland Road
-Kennebunkport: Police Station, Route 9 (across from the American Legion)
-Buxton: Rite-Aid Pharmacy, 226 Parker Farm Road
-Buxton: Hannaford Supermarket & Pharmacy, 24 Portland Road
Disposal is free and anonymous. Officials ask that personal identification information (name, address) be removed from labels. Prescription and over-the-counter pills, drops, ointments, et cetera will be accepted. However, no thermometers, batteries, durable medical equipment or intravenous solutions, injectables or syringes can be accepted.
Maine continues to rank first in the U.S. per capita for the largest state collection. According to Michael W. Wardrop, Resident Agent of the Drug Enforcement Agency in Portland, the five most recent drug take back events removed 13,980 pounds of medication from circulation in Maine, and more than 2 million pounds from the entire 50 states and U.S. territories.
Donald Lauzier, vice president of community relations at Saco & Biddeford Savings Institution and one of the founders of the Northern York County Prescription Drug Coalition, says the local program came about because of a concern over the environmental impact of improper disposal of medications, and prescription drugs potentially getting into the wrong hands.
“Before these drug collection initiatives were organized, people had no idea what to do with expired drugs, or medications that were left over after a family member died,” says Lauzier. “As a result, some of these drugs just sat in peoples’ drawers or medicine cabinets, increasing the chances of these meds being taken by children, or people would just flush the pills down the toilet, potentially impacting our water supplies.”
Local senior living centers, assisted living communities and nursing homes are once again urged to contact their local law enforcement agencies prior to April 27 so that a secure and responsible collection can be made from these locations and surrendered to the DEA at the conclusion of the collection on April 27.
Founded in 1827, Saco & Biddeford Savings Institution is Maine’s oldest bank with branch locations in Biddeford, Old Orchard Beach, Scarborough, South Portland, Westbrook, and its headquarters in downtown Saco. As a leader in community banking, Saco and Biddeford Savings Institution has contributed more than $3.5 million to area organizations over the last ten years; and, continues to support the needs of the area it serves