HCA Florida Healthcare hospitals in North Central Florida will host the fourth annual “Crush the Crisis” national opioid take back day event on Saturday, October 29 to raise awareness about the dangers of opioid misuse.
The event will coincide with the Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, and members of the community are invited to safely dispose of unused or expired medication to avoid the risk of those medications being obtained and misused.
A significant number of opioid addictions and overdose deaths come from individuals accessing unused opioids from family and friends, according to HCA Healthcare. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that 107,000 Americans died from drug overdoses in 2021, which is almost a 15% increase from 2020.
HCA Healthcare’s annual “Crush the Crisis” event aims to educate the community on the risk of opioid misuse, and it also provides a safe and anonymous way to dispose of medications that may be left over from previous procedures or other medical visits.
The following collection sites in North Central Florida will be open on Saturday, October 29, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.:
- HCA Florida Ocala Hospital and HCA Florida West Marion Hospital – 402 S Pine Avenue in Ocala at the Ocala Police Department.
- HCA Florida Lake City Hospital – 340 NW Commerce Drive in Lake City.
- HCA Florida North Florida Hospital – 6500 W Newberry Road in Gainesville.
- HCA Florida Senior Healthcare Center, an affiliate of HCA Florida North Florida Hospital – 5818 Centre Street in Melrose.
During the four-hour event, law enforcement officers from North Central Florida will be collecting the following: tablets, capsules and patches of Hydrocodone (Norco, Lortab, Vicodin), Oxycodone (Oxycontin, Percocet), Tramadol (Ultram), Codeine, Fentanyl (Duragesic), Morphine, Hydromorphone (Dilaudid), and Oxymorphone (Opana).
Ointments, lotions, drops, liquid medication (in leak-proof containers), vape cartridges (without batteries), and pet medications will also be accepted.
While any medications will be accepted, HCA Healthcare states that needles, syringes, lancets, or liquids will not be accepted.
According to HCA Healthcare, 96 of its facilities in 17 states collected 15,566 pounds of unused and expired prescription medications during last year’s “Crush the Crisis” events that were held across the country.
In Florida, the largest contributors during last year’s “Crush the Crisis” were HCA Florida Ocala Hospital and HCA Florida West Marion Hospital. Both hospitals partnered with law enforcement to collect 515 pounds of prescription medications.
HCA Florida Healthcare includes over 450 affiliated sites of care across the state, including HCA Florida Ocala Hospital (1431 SW 1st Avenue in Ocala) and HCA Florida West Marion Hospital (4600 SW 46th Court in Ocala).
For more information, visit the HCA Florida Healthcare webpage.