EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — The Drug Enforcement Administration and law enforcement partners across the country joined together last month to help prevent prescription drug misuse by safely disposing of nearly 664,000 pounds of unneeded medications at nearly 5,000 collection sites across the country.

Since its inception in 2010, DEA’s bi-annual National Prescription Take Back Day has removed more than 17 million pounds of unnecessary medications from communities across the country. The most recent event took place on April 22.

In the 17 counties of West Texas, 2,144 pounds of prescription drugs were turned in while New Mexicans turned in 2,787 pounds. That was 830 more pounds than the October Take back event, according to the DEA El Paso Division.

For more than a decade, Take Back Day has helped Americans easily rid their homes of unneeded medications — those that are old, unwanted, or expired, according to a news release sent out by the El Paso DEA. These medications can be a “gateway to addiction and have helped fuel the opioid epidemic,” the DEA says.

Complete results for DEA’s spring National Prescription Drug Take Back Day are available at www.deatakeback.com.