Section IV. POISON CONTROL AND INFORMATION
As with many types of emergencies, the poisoning emergency happens without
notice. It is important that information sources pertaining to poisoning be maintained in
the pharmacy and at certain other locations (that is, hospital emergency rooms and
poison control centers). These sources of information must be up to date.
Furthermore, the personnel who work in the area must be trained in the rapid use of
POISON INFORMATION/CONTROL CENTERS
Poison control/information centers provide ready sources of information
concerning poisons and chemical substances. These centers are usually staffed on a
24-hour basis. The Physicians' Desk Reference contains a section entitled "Directory of
Poison Control Centers" which states the location and telephone number of poison
control centers located in the United States. Regardless of the size of the medical
treatment facility or the pharmacy, the number of the closest Poison Control Center
should be posted on the wall or telephone where everyone can see the number.
SUGGESTED REFERENCES TO BE MAINTAINED IN THE PHARMACY IN
RELATION TO POISONING INFORMATION
Lesson 1 of MD0804, Pharmacology I, discussed journals and texts pertinent to
the practice of pharmacy. In addition to the references listed in that lesson, the
pharmacy should maintain, at a minimum, the following references.
a. Physician's Desk Reference. This reference contains product information
(that is, the ingredients in a particular product). It is indexed so that the information can
be found if the manufacturer, trade name, or chemical composition of the product is
known. The Product Identification Section of the Physicians' Desk Reference is very
helpful in that if a tablet or capsule of the medication is on hand, this section can be
used to rapidly identify it in most instances. Also helpful is the "Guide to Management
of Drug Overdose" found on the back inside cover.
b. American Drug Index. In this text the trade and generic names of the
medications are cross-indexed. No specific information on toxicity's is included in this
c. Merck Index. In this text the trade and generic names of the products are
cross--indexed. Foreign as well as American products are included in this text.