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Medication Safety Toolkit Available For National Poison Prevention Week

DUBLIN, Ohio, March 13, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- According to a recent study conducted by Safe Kids Worldwide, more than 67,000 children were treated in emergency departments for medicine poisoning in 2011. The increased accessibility of prescription and over-the-counter medicines, coupled with children's natural curiosity, makes it important to educate today's youth in medication safety at an early age.

To address the topic of medication safety head on and in time for National Poison Prevention Week  March 16-22, 2014, The Cardinal Health Foundation and The Ohio State University College of Pharmacy introduced the Medication Safety toolkit, the fifth in a series of interactive toolkits designed to help reduce the abuse of prescription drugs. The Medication Safety toolkit is designed to arm parents, teachers, organizational leaders and health professionals across the country with the necessary resources to discuss the issue of medication safety with elementary-aged children.

"We are excited to provide our communities with this versatile collection of engaging activities that help educate today's youth about how to safely use and store medicine," said Molly Downing, Ph.D., fellow, Pharmacology Education and Outreach at The Ohio State University College of Pharmacy. "Whether you are a parent, teacher, organizational leader or health professional, this toolkit equips adults with the necessary resources to discuss this important issue with children before they enter their teen and adult years."

The Medication Safety toolkit was created by The Ohio State University College of Pharmacy faculty, staff, and students, in collaboration with local elementary schools. The toolkit includes materials appropriate for elementary-aged children grades K-5. The materials focus on four medication safety principles:
  • Only take medicine given by a trusted adult.
  • Do not share medication or take someone else's medication.
  • Keep medications in their original containers to avoid confusion with candy or other medicines.
  • Always store medicine in a safe place, such as a locked cabinet or a high shelf that children cannot reach.

From activity stations and supplemental worksheets to games and visual aids, the contents of this toolkit allow for customization based on the audience and venue to help foster conversation and educate the young participants on how to use medicines safely. The various materials included in the toolkit can easily be implemented in the upcoming Nationwide Poison Prevention Week, an initiative led by the Health Resources and Services Administration.

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