WASHINGTON—Iowa’s United States Senators Joni Ernst and Chuck Grassley, leaders in the fight against the opioid epidemic, are urging their fellow Iowans to participate in the 18th National Prescription Drug Take Back Day this Saturday, October 26, 2019.

Senators Ernst and Grassley worked to get bipartisan legislation to increase participation in federal prescription drug take-back programs included as part of the comprehensive opioid legislation that was signed into law last year.

“Drug take back programs are an important part of an all-of-the-above strategy for combatting the opioid crisis in our country. While they’re just one piece of the puzzle, critical preventive measures like these can help save lives in communities across our state. We encourage Iowans to find their nearest collection site and participate,” said the senators.


National Prescription Drug Take Back Day is a national program coordinated by the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). Its purpose is to provide a safe, convenient and anonymous way to dispose of unused prescription drugs. To find an authorized collection site, contact the DEA Office of Diversion Control’s Registration Call Center at 800/822-9539 or visit http://takebackday.dea.gov and enter a city, county, state or zip code to find the location most convenient for you.

During the 17th National Drug Take Back Day in April 2019, the DEA organized 6,258 collection sites and collected more than 900,000 pounds of prescription medicine nationwide. That’s more than 468 tons of drugs that were diverted from theft, misuse, and polluting the environment. Since the first national collection in 2010, the DEA has collected nearly 12 million pounds. In Iowa, 88 law enforcement officers worked at 135 collection sites throughout the state and collected 11,680 pounds of unused prescription drugs. More than 135,255 pounds of unused drugs have been collected in Iowa since the beginning of the drug take back program.