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The original item was published from 4/19/2022 11:46:01 AM to 4/22/2022 2:00:05 PM.

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Public Health

Posted on: April 19, 2022

[ARCHIVED] Bismarck-Burleigh Public Health and U-Mary Health PRO to Host Prescription Drug Take Back Event

Take Back Event medication collectingBismarck-Burleigh Public Health and the University of Mary Health PRO will host a Take Back Event on Friday, April 22, 2022, from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. on the University of Mary campus in the Lumen Vitae University Center (LVUC) — 7500 University Dr, Bismarck, ND, 58504.


This Take Back Event aims to provide a safe, convenient, and responsible means of disposing prescription drugs while educating the general public about the potential for abuse of medications. This Take Back Event will allow University of Mary students and staff to properly dispose of unused and unwanted over-the-counter and prescription medications preventing drug diversion and misuse in addition to protecting the environment. 


“Prescription opioid abuse and overdose is a growing concern in North Dakota,” said Hayley Schaefbauer, University of Mary Health PRO member. “Unused medications are a public health and safety concern. The Take Back Event provides residents with an easy and convenient way to dispose of unused and unwanted over-the-counter and prescription medications, protect the environment, and keep drugs of the streets and into the wrong hands.”


The following items will be accepted at the Take Back Event:

  • Unused or expired prescriptions and over-the-counter medications, including pills, tablets, and caplets (remove product from the packaging)
  • Inhalers, nebulizer solutions, liquids, and creams (leave in the original container)
  • Controlled substances
  • Pain relief, such as Vicodin, Hydrocodone, Demerol, OxyContin, fentanyl, etc.
  • Anti-depressants, such as Valium, Zoloft, Prozac, etc.
  • Sleep aids, such as Ambien, Lunesta, Sonata, etc.


The following items will not be accepted at this Take Back Event:

  • Sharps (syringes, lancets), thermometers, glass, home-based care (HBC) or durable medical equipment (DME) supplies, and pharmacy inventory. Residents are encouraged to ask their pharmacists where to safely dispose of these items
  • Cancer medications


“Proper disposal of unused drugs saves lives and protects the community,” said Bismarck-Burleigh Public Health Unit substance abuse prevention coordinator Susan Kahler. “Access is a key risk factor for abuse and addiction of prescription opioid medication. If we reduce the accessibility of unused or expired medications, the fewer drugs there are to be misused, and fewer people will be at risk for abuse, addiction, overdose, and even death,” added Kahler.


The Take Back Event launched in December 2009. North Dakota now offers two free programs for residents to dispose of unwanted medications – the Take Back Event at participating law enforcement agencies and the MedSafe program at participating pharmacies. North Dakota is the only state in the nation operating free, year-round, statewide prescription drug disposal programs at local law enforcement agencies and pharmacies. To view a list of all permanent Take Back Event locations throughout North Dakota, visit https://attorneygeneral.nd.gov/public-safety/take-back-program/take-back-program-locations.


This Take Back Event is a prevention strategy implemented through the State Opioid Response Grant and the Burleigh-Morton Behavioral Health Coalition, Prevention/Education Subcommittee.


About the City of Bismarck

Bismarck’s the spot for people who enjoy living, learning, working and playing in a city with an enduring community pride. We embrace our rich heritage, economic opportunity and lifelong learning to cultivate a healthy and sustainable environment fostering opportunity for all.


About the University of Mary 

True to its motto “lumen vitae” — The Light of Life — the University of Mary offers education for the whole of life through cutting-edge professional programs and graduate programs animated by moral courage and leadership in chosen professions and service to the community. A private, co-educational Catholic institution, the University of Mary welcomes students of all faiths and backgrounds.


A Christian, Catholic, Benedictine institution founded in 1959 by the Benedictine Sisters of Annunciation Monastery, Mary offers nearly 60 bachelor’s, 15 master’s, and five doctoral programs — in business administration, education, nursing practice, occupational therapy and physical therapy. The 19-sport Athletic Department adheres to its Greatness Through Virtue mission under the governance of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) and American Collegiate Hockey Association (ACHA) conferences. With more than 3,800 students, Mary has locations in North Dakota, Montana, Arizona, and Rome, Italy, as well as vibrant online offerings.


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