National Poison Prevention Week is celebrated each March, and Liberty HomeCare & Hospice Services urges everyone to be diligent with senior medication safety as a way to help stop the increase in poisonings.
For example, the number of poisoning deaths in North Carolina has more than tripled since 1999, and according to the Carolinas Poison Center, more than 200,000 calls were placed in N.C. in the two-year period of 2010-11.
While most people think about young children and poisonings, it is also imperative to educate seniors. Consider:
- Calls for senior adults increased 30 percent over a 5-year period
- 50% of senior adults have no routine for taking their medicines
- 83% of senior adults routinely take at least one prescription medication
- 50% of senior adults take three or more prescription medications, increasing the risk of drug interactions
- Prescription and non-prescription pain medications are the most common involved substances in poisoning exposures for all ages.
- Up to 36% of poisonings in children take place in the grandparents’ home
- Up to 20% of poisonings in children involve a grandparent’s medication
Liberty HomeCare & Hospice Services is committed to helping reduce poisonings through informative articles and videos, and also participates in other educational events throughout its coverage area.
“National Poison Prevention Week is a good reminder for all of us to take care of medications, particularly for seniors,” said Liberty HomeCare & Hospice Services President Tony Zizzamia. “The troubling trend of increased poisonings only reiterates that importance. We want to help everyone, including seniors, learn about the importance of medication safety.”