The Palmetto Poison Center, located in the College of Pharmacy, serves all 46 counties in South Carolina and receives over 31,000 calls per year for treatment information on exposures to poisonous, hazardous, or toxic materials. We provide services free-of-charge to the South Carolina residents and health professionals 24 hours-a-day, 365 days a year.
Our center is one of only 55 accredited poison centers in the US and the only poison center for South Carolina. The center is staffed by health care professionals - including pharmacists and nurses - who are formally trained in toxicology as specialists in poison information. We participate as an experiential site for fourth-year pharmacy students, in addition to being involved in educational training of emergency medicine physicians and pediatricians. Additionally, we provide community outreach throughout South Carolina.
Types of Calls
Our calls range from accidental and intentional ingestion of poisonous substances and medications to adverse drug effects, occupational exposures, envenomations, and biochemical disasters. Over 50% of calls involve exposures in patients under the age of seventeen. A majority of the time (over 85%) callers are provided advice on how to safely treat a poisoning at home therefore avoiding a costly trip to the emergency room.
The poison center provides consultation to health care providers charged with the care of a poisoning emergency. Our medical toxicology team, physicians board certified in toxicology, is available 24/7 to provide physician-to-physician advice.
A national study found that for every dollar spent on the Palmetto Poison Center, more than $13 is saved in unnecessary health care costs, including emergency room and physician visits, ambulance services, and unnecessary medical treatments.
Additional savings occur when other benefits are included: assisting health professionals in optimally managing poisoned patients, decreasing hospital stays, poison prevention education, real-time data analysis to identify poisoning clusters, and providing the general public free, around-the-clock access to certified poison information specialists.
The Palmetto Poison Center is proud to serve the entire state of South Carolina. Call 1-800-222-1222 for information regarding poison prevention and treatment of exposures. Follow us on Facebook