NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) - Health officials hoping to curb teenage prescription drug abuse have launched a new awareness campaign on the issue.
According to the The Partnership at Drugfree.org, one in six teens has used prescription painkillers to get high and nearly two-thirds of teens who misuse prescription medication get the pills from family members and friends.
WCBS 880's Marla Diamond reports
Officials said "The Medicine Abuse Project" is aimed at informing teens and encouraging parents to take a pledge to discuss prescription drug abuse with their children.
"Commit to having a conversation with the kids in your life, safeguarding your meds and taking action," The Partnership at Drugfree.org CEO Steve Pasierb told WCBS 880's Marla Diamond.
Pasierb said parents are already aware of the dangers of illegal drugs and of teenage driving.
"They need to be worried about prescription drugs just as much," Pasierb told Diamond.
Phil Bowers said he knows the dangers of prescription painkillers all too well after his 18-year-old son died.
"I need to wake parents up. I need to get in their face and say, 'look at these eyes, they're empty. Life is not OK,'" Bowers told Diamond.
New York City Health Commissioner Dr. Thomas Farley and "The Talk" host Melissa Gilbert took part in the launch of the national campaign at Grand Central Terminal.
Parents can take the pledge at medicineabuseproject.org.
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