Toxikon History

The Toxikon Consortium was founded in 1988 through the vision of Dr. Daniel Hryhorczuk and a grant from the Chicago Community Trust to pool scarce toxicology resources and to develop toxicology education, clinical service, and research.  The consortium brought together Cook County Hospital, University of Illinois, and Rush Presbyterian-St. Luke’s Medical Center.  Each of these institutions provided critical resources to the fellowship program.

  • Cook County Hospital has been the administrative core of the program.  The Section of Toxicology (Division of Occupational Medicine) provided initial support and space. Since 2004, we have resided within the Division of Toxicology (Department of Emergency Medicine) at Cook County Hospital.
  • The University of Illinois provided drug information resources as well as emergency medicine resources through a newly-formed Division of Toxicology in the Department of Emergency Medicine in the early 1990’s.
  • RUSH was the original home to the Northeastern Illinois Regional Poison Control Center.  In 1995, the Poison Center moved to MCHC (Metropolitan Chicago Healthcare Council) as the Illinois Poison Center. MCHC and the IPC are located in downtown Chicago, above Union Station.  The Illinois Poison Center (IPC) now acts as the sole poison information resource for the State of Illinois, and the Toxikon Consortium provides medical back-up.

The medical toxicology fellowship was originally approved by Cook County Hospital in 1985.   The original pathway for training was a preceptorship program that was completed by four individuals.  This was followed by the formation of the two-year fellowship program.  The initial credentialing body for our Medical Toxicology trainees was the ABMT (The American Board of Medical Toxicology). The ABMS (American Board of Medical Specialties) and AOA (American Osteopathic Association) specialty boards are the current credentialing bodies.

In addition to training toxicology fellows, Toxikon has also become a model of excellence in toxicology training for medical/pharmacy students and residents from multiple specialties including Emergency Medicine, Pediatrics, Pharmacy, and Occupational Medicine.   We train approximately 110 residents and 60 medical and pharmacy students per year.

The Medical Toxicology Fellowship Program is the centerpiece of The Toxikon Consortium.  We are proud to produce outstanding leaders in our field and take tremendous pride in advocating for public health and safety in all matters involving medical toxicology.

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