SIOUX CITY (KTIV) -- To many, Drug Take Back Day is far more than clearing out unused bottles in your medicine cabinet. It's about public safety and public health.
"This is a day that is spearheaded by the DEA, they offer this twice a year where you can bring your unused medication from home and drop that off at these take back locations that the DEA offers," said local pharmacist Ashley Ingle.
Area pharmacists say most misused substances are easily obtained because of neglected leftover medication.
"9.9 million Americans misused controlled substances last year, and those are typically from their own medicine cabinet or from family or friends' medicine cabinet," said Ingle.
Officials say it's nearly just as important to safely dispose of prescriptions as it is to safely use them as directed.
"You have a friend or family member that's over, they have a headache, they hurt their arm, and they go and grab whatever is in the medicine cabinet to use that, and then they end up misusing that and end up causing harm to themselves. That's obviously an incredibly scary thing and we want to help combat that," said Ingle.
Local pharmacies and law enforcement agencies make sure to accept any and all unused medication in a safe and anonymous way to ensure community health and safety.