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Best Way to Celebrate National Poison Prevention Week = Save Our Number



SYRACUSE, N.Y. (March 20, 2023) – During National Poison Prevention Week from March 19th-25th, the Upstate New York Poison Center reminds you that our staff is here for everyone in our 54-county coverage area 24/7, 365 days a year.

“Our Specialists in Poison Information help to answer your poison emergency or call for poison information 24 hours a day,” says Vince Calleo, MD, Medical Director of the Upstate New York Poison Center, “Rather than losing time searching for an answer online, call us at 1-800-222-1222. We are always fast, free, and confidential.”

This year, ​in recognition of National Poison Prevention Week and our 66th year of service, we are sharing what we do on a daily basis to save lives.

What is the Upstate New York Poison Center?

The number to call with a poison emergency or for poison prevention information with:

  • Poison emergency telephone management
  • Poison information resources
  • Public education
  • Professional education
  • Research and data collection
  • Toxicosurveillance in real time

What To Do If A Poisoning Happens?

  • Take the product to the phone (Take the child if s/he is the patient)
  • Call the Upstate New York Poison Center at 1-800-222-1222
  • A Specialist in Poison Information will ask you some questions, including:
    • Your name and phone number
    • Age and weight of patient
    • Name on container of product
    • Amount involved
    • Time of poisoning
    • Any symptoms

  • The poison center will tell you what to do next

Who Will Answer My Call?

Every caller receives professional expert service:

  • Calls are answered by Certified Specialists in Poison Information (CSPIs), registered nurses and pharmacists trained in toxicology
  • Specialists provide the most efficient and up-to-date poison information available
  • Physicians and toxicologists are on-call 24 hours a day for consultation purposes
  • Other specialists are available for consultation

What to Expect When You Call Our Poison Center?

After careful listening, the Poison Specialist will generally tell you one of the following:

  • This is not a problem, there is no need for medical care
    (e.g., A child ate some silica gel crystals found in a shoe box)
  • The history you provided requires the patient be observed for a period of time to be sure s/he will be okay (The Certified Specialist in Poison Information will call back to check on the patient and no medical care is expected)
  • Based on history provided, a trip to a physician or health care facility is necessary
    (The Certified Specialist in Poison information can arrange for an emergency transport if caller agrees)

On Monday March 20th at 1:00 p.m. the Erie County Executive’s Office and Erie County Health Department will announce the County’s support for National Poison Prevention Week with a proclamation signing.

Don’t forget all week long to follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

We want residents in our 54-county footprint and all healthcare providers to know our availability because “When Poison Happens, We’re Here For You!” 

In the case of a poisoning or for information purposes, call the Upstate New York Poison Center at 1-800-222-1222. We are open 24/7, 365 days a year. Each year our center manages more than 50,000 calls from health care providers, 911 operators, hospitals, industry, schools, and the general public in our 54-county service area.

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to stay up to date with the latest information.

About Upstate New York Poison Center

Housed inside Upstate Medical University in Syracuse, NY, the Upstate New York Poison Center is dedicated to reducing the number, cost and severity of poisonings within its designated 54-county service area as mandated by New York State Law. The Center is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to both health professionals and the general public at 1-800-222-1222.

About Upstate Medical University

SUNY Upstate Medical University in Syracuse, NY, is the only academic medical center in Central New York. It is also the region's largest employer with 9,460 employees. Affiliated with the State University of New York, Upstate's mission is to improve the health of the community through education, biomedical research and health care.