10:21 AM

Safely Dispose of Prescription Drugs on National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, Oct. 29

Northwestern Medicine, Drug Enforcement Administration partner to host community sites

CHICAGO – Oct. 11, 2022 – Unused or expired prescription medications are a public safety issue, leading to potential accidental poisoning, misuse and overdose. Northwestern Medicine will participate in National Prescription Drug Take Back Day by hosting eight collection sites from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 29. Community members can safely dispose of their unused medications at the drive-up locations.

“Studies show that many people who use opioids are first exposed to the prescription medications in the homes of family members or friends,” said Sterling Elliott, PharmD, BCMTMS, a clinical pharmacist at Northwestern Medicine and assistant professor of orthopaedics at Feinberg School of Medicine. “National Drug Take Back Day is a safe, convenient and responsible way to dispose of unused opioids and other prescription medications. If you throw unused medications in the trash, they can be retrieved and used, or illegally sold. If you flush them, they can contaminate the water supply.”

According to the Drug Enforcement Administration, the non-medical use of prescription drugs ranks as the second most-common form of drug use in America.

“The success of the DEA’s National Prescription Drug Take Back Day is possible only with our many law enforcement partners, and with community-minded healthcare providers like Northwestern Medicine,” said Robert J. Bell, Special Agent in Charge of the DEA Chicago Division. “The large amounts of unwanted prescription drugs collected on Take Back Day reflect our shared commitment to the safety and health of the people we serve.”

The eight Northwestern Medicine drive-up collection sites are located at:

  • Northwestern Medicine Central DuPage Hospital, East Entrance roundabout, 25 North Winfield Road, Winfield
  • Northwestern Medicine Palos Hospital, 12251 South 80th Avenue, Palos Heights
  • Northwestern Medicine Lake Forest Hospital, Bays Medical Building entrance, 900 North Westmoreland Road, Lake Forest
  • Northwestern Medicine Huntley Hospital, Medical Office Building #2 (use driveway on north side of the building), 10370 Haligus Road, Huntley
  • Northwestern Medicine Immediate Care St. Charles (on the east side of the parking lot by Kirk Road), 2900 Foxfield Road, St. Charles
  • Northwestern Medicine Kishwaukee Hospital Medical Records Building (one driveway south of main hospital), 2731 Sycamore Road, DeKalb
  • Northwestern Medicine Valley West Hospital, 1302 North Main Street, Sandwich
  • Northwestern Medicine Prentice Women’s Hospital, 250 East Superior Street, Chicago

Sharps and liquids will not be accepted, and Take Back Day is for community members, not for commercial organizations.

Find information about safe medication storage and disposal at nm.org/safemeddisposal.

For more information about prescription drug misuse, visit www.DEATakeBack.com.