School Of Pharmacy Faculty, Students Continue Poison Prevention Awareness Efforts
March 19th marks the start of National Poison Prevention Week, a tradition in the United States since 1962. "March Poison Prevention Month" was jointly started by the Allegheny County Pharmacists Association, an affiliate of the Pennsylvania Pharmacists Association, and Safe Kids Allegheny County, acknowledging the need for the public to be better informed of the need for safety precautions in and around the home, especially for children.
Also participating in this program are Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield, the Pittsburgh Poison Center, Duquesne University School of Pharmacy, the University of Pittsburgh School of Pharmacy, McKesson HBOC, and Cardinal Health by Prestige Delivery.
Unintentional encounters with improperly stored medicines, vitamins, household cleaners, and chemicals are the cause of the majority of fatal and non-fatal poisonings in children. The Pittsburgh Poison Center's total service area had 36,552 unintentional poisoning exposures in 2016, with 46 percent being children five years and younger and 29 percent between the ages of one and two.
As part of this program, which is co-lead by pharmacists Stan Jonas, Maria Osborne, and A.J Greco, ACPA has created and distributed approximately 400 Poison Prevention kits to pharmacies and head starts throughout Allegheny County this March. These kits contain "Mr. Yuk" home poison check lists and "Mr. Yuk" stickers.
Duquesne University student pharmacists from the American Pharmacists Association–Academy of Student Pharmacists and Pennsylvania Pharmacists Association–Allegheny County Pharmacists Association student chapters helped package these materials, which are intended to increase public awareness regarding poison prevention. Pharmacist activity in this and other poison prevention programs, as well as the use of safety caps on prescriptions and OTC products, remains our commitment for improving the health of our communities.
Dr. A.J. Greco
Founded in 1878, Duquesne is consistently ranked among the nation's top Catholic universities for its award-winning faculty and tradition of academic excellence. Duquesne, a campus of nearly 9,500 graduate and undergraduate students, has been nationally recognized for its academic programs, community service and commitment to sustainability. Follow Duquesne University on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.