According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, poisoning is the leading cause of injury death in the United States. Drugs—both pharmaceutical and illicit—cause the vast majority of poisoning deaths. In 2015, 52,404 deaths involved drug poisoning, 84 percent of which were unintentional.
In 2015, just under half of exposure cases managed by poison centers involved children younger than six, but as in previous years, many of the more serious cases occurred among adolescents and adults. Now more than ever, Americans need immediate access to a credible source of poisoning information and treatment advice—in a poisoning emergency, every second counts.
Responding to more than 3 million calls each year, poison centers save countless American lives and millions of American taxpayer dollars every year by providing free, confidential medical advice to people who have been exposed to poison. Unfortunately, many people are either unaware of the availability of poison control as a life-saving service or don’t have quick access to poison control contact information without taking the time to search for it online. With our new online tool, PoisonHelp.org, and our trusted national Poison Help hotline, the public has more resources than ever before to quickly and accurately respond to a poisoning.
Free, confidential “poison control” can be easily accessed two ways:
The Poison Help Hotline:
The Poison Help hotline, 1-800-222-1222, connects callers to their local poison control center anywhere in the United States. Callers receive free, confidential, expert medical advice 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year from toxicology specialists, including nurses, pharmacists, physicians and poison information providers. The American Association of Poison Control Centers (AAPCC) and the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) work together to ensure the number and poison centers are used appropriately.
In 2017, AAPCC launched a new interactive online tool, www.poisonhelp.org, to provide quick, expertly vetted answers to questions about poisoning -- the leading cause of injury-related death in America. Visit, www.poisonhelp.org, answer a few simple questions, and receive immediate treatment advice. NO app download is necessary.