Current Suspected Overdose Deaths in Delaware for 2018: 259 logo

DHSS Press Release

Rita Landgraf, Secretary
Jill Fredel, Director of Communications
302-255-9047, Pager 302-357-7498

Date: May 6, 2013


Dover, DE - Delaware residents participated in the spring 2013 Prescription Drug Take-Back Day on April 27, turning in more than 6,122 pounds of unwanted or expired medications, the second highest total in state history. The event gave the public the opportunity to safely and anonymously dispose of unused medications, prevent pill abuse and theft, and reduce pollution in water sources by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs.

"Delawareans should be commended for their terrific response on the Prescription Drug Take-Back Day," said Rita Landgraf, Department of Health and Social Services Cabinet Secretary. "Delawareans are protecting themselves, their families, and the environment by safely disposing of prescription drugs." The total amount of medications collected at the Drug Take-Back events in Delaware are as follows:

Event date - # Pounds
May 14, 2010 - 1,680 lbs.
September 25, 2010 - 303 lbs.
April 30, 2011 - 4,395 lbs.
October 29, 2011 - 4,465 lbs.
April 28, 2012 - 6,808 lbs.
September 29, 2012 - 4,561 lbs.
April 27, 2013 - 6,122 lbs.
TOTAL - 28,334 lbs.

To develop a comprehensive solution to the prescription drug problem, the state's policy and program recommendations for combating prescription drug abuse were developed by the state's Prescription Drug Action Committee, co-chaired by Dr. Karyl Rattay, Delaware Division of Public Health Director, and Dr. Randeep Kahlon, immediate past president of the Medical Society of Delaware. PDAC is a broad and diverse group that includes physicians, community-based organizations, behavioral health partners, hospital systems, pain management specialists, law enforcement, the Attorney General's Office, the Department of Homeland Security, Medicaid, pharmaceutical representatives, medical professional regulators, retail pharmacy representation, the Delaware Nursing Association and patient advocacy entities, as well as public and private payers.

"While Take-Back Day is an important step in the right direction, the Prescription Drug Action Committee took a larger-systems approach to combating prescription drug abuse," said Dr. Rattay. "We must look at the problem from a medical, societal and sociological perspective. These recommendations are just the first step in addressing the larger problem."

The PDAC recommendations ( TakeBackday.pdf) fell into two categories; policy and programs: Policy Recommendations:

Prescription drugs have become a leading cause of accidental death in Delaware, and are abused more than any other drugs. For further information on PDAC or the committee recommendations, visit

Delaware Health and Social Services is committed to improving the quality of the lives of Delaware's citizens by promoting health and well-being, fostering self-sufficiency, and protecting vulnerable populations.