Yingling Backs Legislation to Increase Prescription Drug Affordability

03/11/2021
ROUND LAKE BEACH, Ill. – To ensure that residents have access to affordable and accessible healthcare, state Rep. Sam Yingling, D-Grayslake, is advocating for legislation that would allow unused prescription drugs to be donated and distributed to patients.

“It is unconscionable that there are those who are unable to get the medication they need while unused medications are being destroyed,” said Yingling. “It is common sense that medication that otherwise is going to be wasted should be given to those who need it.”

Yingling is co-sponsoring House Bill 119, which creates the Prescription Drug Repository (PDR) program. The PDR program allows any person or healthcare facility to donate unopened, sealed medication or medical equipment in the original, tamper-evident packaging to participating pharmacies. Donated medication or medical equipment would then be distributed at a low fee to eligible patients.

Unused medications present numerous issues if not dealt with properly. These include environmental pollution from improper disposal and potential health risks if those who have not been prescribed a medication gain access to it. In the past, Yingling has worked to mitigate these issues by holding Drug Take Back events with the Lake County Sheriff’s Office, which give residents an opportunity to safely dispose of their drugs.

“At a time where healthcare accessibility and affordability is at the forefront of our thoughts, it is important that we make meaningful steps towards improving the way that we manage our resources,” said Yingling. “By limiting waste and increasing distribution efficiency, the Prescription Drug Repository program will make a major impact on the lives of many residents, as well as our environment.”