Monday, March 17, 2014

Celebrate National Poison Prevention Week

The third full week of March marks Poison Prevention Week and is an important time to become better informed about how to keep yourself and others safe from unintentional poisonings.

A poison is considered any substance, including medications, which can be harmful to your body if too much is ingested, inhaled, injected or absorbed through the skin. An accidental poisoning occurs when a person unintentionally takes too much of a substance and does not mean to cause harm.
Currently, more than two million poisonings are reported each year to the Nation’s poison centers. And according to the American Association of Poison Control Centers, approximately 90 percent of poisonings happen at home, and 51 percent of them involve children under the age of six.

Here are some poison facts and tips:

  • In children ages six and younger, the most common exposure is to medicines, plants, pesticides and cleaning products.
  • Child-resistant packages are not childproof. Most two-year olds can open a child-resistant container in 4 to 5 minutes.
  • Calling 1-800-222-1222 from anywhere in the United States will connect you to a local poison center.
  • Keep all poisons locked up and out of reach of children.
  • Never refer to medicine (prescription, vitamins or otherwise) as candy as children may mistake tiny pills for yummy candy.
  • Get household furnaces checked yearly and make sure working carbon monoxide detectors are in the house and checked multiple times a year. This is especially important for the winter months.

What to Do if a Poisoning Occurs

In the event that you or someone with you has been poisoned, first remain calm. Then call the toll-free Poison Help line right away at 1-800-222-1222. Make sure to have the following information on hand:

-       victim’s weight
-       the container or bottle that provides what the victim was poisoned with
-       when the poisoning occurred
-       the location of the poisoning

Stay on the phone with the poison control specialist and follow all the instructions you are given. For more information on accidental poisonings and what you can do to protect yourself and loved ones, please visit www.poisoncontrol.org.
See below the Proclamation from Texas Governor Rick Perry recognizing Poison Prevention Week!
 

 

Thursday, March 13, 2014

See What Events are happening in YOUR Area for Poison Prevention Week!

Next week marks National Poison Prevention Week. Fun events are happening all throughout Texas to help educate the public on poison prevention. Below you can find a list of events happening in various cities in Texas. Come on out and join in the fun and get educated too!

Central Texas Poison Center, Scott & White Memorial Hospital, Temple
Central Texas is hosting a Poison Safety Safari on Saturday, March 22, 2014 from 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. at the Cameron Park Zoo in Waco! Participate in various activities such as interactive games and animal interactions, and learn about staying safe from poisons in the environment. Free goody bags for the first 500 children!

Central Texas will also be hosting education events for the media:
·         Monday, March 17th – A panel of experts (featuring Central Texas Poison Center’s Toxicologist, Dr. Ryan Morrissey) will be discussing the new and popular device, electronic cigarettes. 

·         Wednesday, March 19th – Snake expert, Tim Cole from Austin Snake and Reptile will join a physician and Poison Center Specialist to discuss venomous snakes.  Mr. Cole will be providing 4 live venomous snakes to display.

Keep an eye out on the Central Texas Poison Center Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/CtrlTXPC for air times.

North Texas Poison Center, Dallas County Hospital District, Dallas
North Texas will hold the 10th Annual Poison Jungle Safari at the Caldwell Zoo in Tyler, Texas on Saturday, March 22, 2014 from 12:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.  As patrons enjoy the zoo, they can also stop at different stations to learn about Poisons in the Home, Carbon Monoxide Danger, Medication Safety, Bites and Stings, Tobacco and Drug Dangers and Poisonous Plants.  Someone will win a bike at 4:00 too!

Texas Panhandle Poison Center, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, Amarillo
Texas Panhandle is hosting its 30th Medication Cleanout™ event on March 15th to kick off National Poison Prevention Week (NPPW).  This year marks the 5th anniversary of the program. Spring is a great time to clean out your medicine cabinets and drop off medications that are expired or no longer needed.  Visit www.MedicationCleanout.com for more information about the Amarillo event March 15th and the Lubbock and Abilene events in April.

TPPC has been visiting local elementary schools this year to share poison safety tips through an interactive puppet show.  During NPPW, focus will shift to middle and high schools for a “Save it to Your Cell” campaign.  Numerous schools have agreed to read a script that encourages students to get out their cell phones during home room and save 1-800-222-1222 into their contacts. This will be the first year for this project and TPPC plans to expand to school districts throughout their region in the future.
Last but not least, on Friday, March 14th from 11-2, TPPC will host an open house to showcase their brand new location in the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center School of Pharmacy building, 1300 S. Coulter, Suite 105.

South Texas Poison Center, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio

This year’s observance will focus on poisoning-prevention themes, with a different theme each day. The South Texas Poison Center will post information on each topic on its website at http://www.texaspoison.com/, and Miguel Fern├índez, M.D., a medical toxicologist and the director of the South Texas Poison Center, will be available for interviews.

·        Tuesday, March 19 – Poison Centers: Protecting Health While Saving You Time and  Money
·        Wednesday, March 20 – Poisonings Span a Lifetime
·         Thursday, March 21 – Home, Safe, Home
·         Friday, March 22 – Spotlight on Prescription Painkillers

West Texas Regional Poison Center, University Medical Center and El Paso County Hospital District, El Paso
The West Texas Regional Poison Center will be hosting its 20th Annual Poison Jungle Safari on Saturday, March 29, 2014 from 10:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. at Cleveland Square Park. The event will be in conjunction with the KidsPalooza event in downtown El Paso. Come on out and learn more about poison prevention and safety- fun for the whole family! And get this- the first 500 children under 12 to complete the Safari will receive a free t-shirt! 

Monday, March 3, 2014

Get Your Poison Control Educational Materials Just in Time for National Poison Prevention Week!

The third full week of March marks National Poison Prevention Week. In 1961, Congress established National Poison Prevention Week to raise awareness, reduce unintentional poisonings, and promote poison prevention.

A poison is considered any substance, including medications, which can be harmful to your body if too much is ingested, inhaled, injected or absorbed through the skin. An accidental poisoning occurs when a person unintentionally takes too much of a substance and does not mean to cause harm.
The Texas Poison Control Network (TPCN) is here to help spread awareness and remind you to contact a poison center in the event of a possible poisoning. During the third week of March, educators throughout the country will be holding various educational activities to help promote awareness about poison control services. The TPCN provides educational materials for ordering and you can do it directly from their website.

If you are located in Texas, please visit www.poisoncontrol.org where you can order poison control pamphlets on:

·        Poison Prevention Guide
·        Parents of Newborns
·        Bites and Stings
·        Poisonous Plants
·        Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

In the event that you or someone with you has been poisoned, first remain calm. Then call the toll-free Poison Help line right away at 1-800-222-1222, which connects you to your local poison center. Make sure to have the following information handy:

·              Victim’s weight
·              The container or bottle that provides what the victim was poisoned with
·              When the poisoning occurred
·              The location of the poisoning