John Maszinski
Office: 312-580-6440
Your Doctor Says It’s Time to Clear the Medicine Cabinet
Dispose of unused medications at October 28 event to help prevent opioid abuse

Chicago, IL - The Illinois State Medical Society (ISMS) is calling on everyone to empty their medicine cabinets of old and unused prescription drugs.  These medications are often not used by the person for whom they were prescribed and can become "gateway drugs" that lead to addiction. It is critically important to dispose of pain medications, especially opioids such as oxycodone and hydrocodone, since misuse of these drugs has links to opioid abuse and heroin use.

"Prescribing is on the decline and use of prescribing tools such as Illinois' Prescription Monitoring Program continue to increase," said ISMS President Nestor Ramirez, MD, MPH. "At the same time," he added, "it is important to educate our patients and others on how to ensure that their prescribed medications don't fall into the wrong hands."

This October, ISMS is promoting safe medication disposal by providing digital resources to Illinois physicians. Secure disposal is offered year-round at many pharmacies and law enforcement facilities. ISMS' digital resources also include information about the upcoming National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day. This event, sponsored by the federal Drug Enforcement Administration, will next be held on Saturday, October 28 . At its last Take-Back day in April, Illinois disposed of an astonishing 43,000 pounds of medication.

Electronic copies of the ISMS medication disposal resources are available to anyone at .


Founded in 1840, ISMS is a professional membership association representing Illinois physicians in all medical specialties, and their patients, statewide. Dr. Ramirez is a Champaign-based neonatologist.

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