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Notice to Readers: National Poison Prevention Week, March 17--23, 2002

The theme of this year's National Poison Prevention Week (March 17--23, 2002) is "Children Act Fast...So Do Poisons!" Of the 2.2 million poisonings reported to U.S. poison centers in 2000, 52.7% involved children aged <6 years (1). The most common substances to which young children were exposed included cosmetics and personal care products, cleaning substances, analgesics, foreign bodies, and plants. Of the 920 poisoning-related fatalities reported in the same year, 2.2% involved children aged <6 years. Of poisoning emergencies reported, 74.7% were managed safely in the home.

In January 2002, U.S. poison centers and the American Association of Poison Control Centers (AAPCC) introduced a toll-free poison center number (1-[800]-222-1222) through which callers from the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands can reach local poison centers. Additional information on National Poison Prevention Week, other poison prevention programs, and poison center services is available from AAPCC at or and from the Poison Prevention Week Council at .


  1. Litovitz TL, Klein-Schwartz W, White S, et al. 2000 Annual Report of the American Association of Poison Control Centers Toxic Exposure Surveillance System. Am J Emerg Med 2001;19:337--95.

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