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Cook County Sheriff’s Office (Illinois)

Cook County
Sheriff’s Office (Illinois)

Jurisdiction: Cook County, population 5,275,541

The Cook County Sheriff’s Office Prescription Drug Take Back Program expanded its collection of unwanted drugs for a county population that includes 781,425 persons over the age of 65 and 341,550 persons under age 65 with a disability. Initially, the program disposed of 49,000 pounds of medication annually; it was estimated that 20–25 percent (9,800 pounds) of that total was composed of opioids and controlled substances. It was also estimated that as much as 512,000 pounds of unwanted drugs were being improperly disposed of in Cook County annually, of which approximately 113,000 pounds were opioids or controlled substances.

Comprehensive Secure and Responsible Drug Disposal Program funds were used to increase the collection of unwanted drugs in Cook County by 20 percent (10,000 pounds) annually. This was achieved by installing take-back equipment in senior centers, which resulted in the expansion of permanent collection sites overseen by the Take Back Program from 88 to 108, and by expanding disposal services through its mail-back program for seniors and disabled adults.