Arkansas officials are hoping to collect a record amount of unwanted or expired prescription drugs on Saturday, Oct. 26, when the state participates in National Prescription Drug Take Back Day.
Officials also have announced that for the first time, drop-off locations in the state will accept vaping devices, if batteries are removed.
State Drug Director Kirk Lane has said the state has come close to collecting 30,000 pounds of prescription drugs in past years, and he hopes to see that amount reached this year. The event will take place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.; find a drop-off location near you here.
The United States is experiencing an opioid overdose epidemic. Arkansas has the second-highest opioid prescribing rate in the nation, so reducing accessibility to prescription drugs by those who might intentionally or unintentionally misuse them is particularly urgent.
Vaping devices are being added to the items collect as federal and state officials investigate a rash of vaping-related lung illnesses and deaths.
See opioid prescribing rates in each Arkansas county here.
Last year we used data from the All-Payer Claims Database to create maps comparing opioid prescribing levels for Arkansas adults on commercial insurance and on Medicaid.