Poison centers in America: How well do they perform

R. J. Geller, J. G. Fisher, J. D. Leeper, J. D. Tooson, S. Ranganath an

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Marked differences in call volume, service area, and center resources continue to excist between poison centers certified by the American Association of Poison Control Centers as Regional Poison Centers and those not meeting these criteria. However, the present clinical significance, if any, of these factors remains unproven. The only previous study, conducted in 1980, used only 1 test problem and did not attempt to separately analyze each of the differences between Regional Poison Centers and Non-regional poison centers. This study solicited the participation of all 208 US poison centers excisting. Fifty-four poison centers (REGIONAL CENTERS 16/34=47%, NON-REGIONAL CENTERS 38/173=22%) agreed to participate. Three problems were presented to each center by callers. Considerable variation was observed in efficiency and in extent of information provided. Overall, Regional Centers provided complete and correct answers for 83% of the presented cases, while Non-regional Centers did so in 57% of the cases. Although Regional Center status, staff experience, center call volume, and medical direction all appear to be important, the most predictive factors were staff and center experience.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)240-245
Number of pages6
JournalVeterinary and Human Toxicology
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1990


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