Wisconsin AG: 4 of 5 heroin addicts start with prescription medication

Posted at 5:44 PM, Oct 27, 2017

According to the Wisconsin Attorney General, four of five heroin addicts started by taking prescription medication. 

AG Brad Schimel is hoping a drug take back program will help cut the problem down from its roots.

"There is a direct path between what is in your medicine cabinet to the people in your community dying of drug overdoses," Schimel said. "If we can address the abusive prescription pain killers, we can dramatically decrease the demand for heroin in our communities."

There are more than 300 take back locations across the state. Find the one closest to you here.

The opioid problem didn't start overnight and Schimel says it won't be fixed that quickly either, but he's hoping everyone in Wisconsin can pitch in to help the problem down the road. 

"We're seeing a leveling off of that slope of people that are starting to use opiates and abuse them," Schimel said. "We're seeing that as the gateway to heroin. We already have an awful lot of people addicted to opiates and they're turning to opiates and the drug cartels are turning sinister. We're going to continue to see tragedies before we completely resolve or eradicate this problem. The first most important step is to stop the beginning stages. That's what we can do by getting medications out of cabinets so they're not being abused."