Poison Response

Poison control centers provide expertise and treatment advice by phone and are staffed by pharmacists, physicians, nurses and toxicology specialists.

About poison response

Poison Control Centers provide free, 24-hour professional medical advice for poison related situations.

Idaho is served by the Regional Poison Center in Nebraska. All poison centers can be reached by calling the same telephone number, 1-800-222-1222. 

Poison control help line

The Poison Control Help Line can provide medical advice for the following situations:

  • Your toddler ate pills from someone's purse
  • You feel ill after swimming in a body of water with a harmful algal bloom
  • You drank household cleaner
  • You took the dog's medicine
  • Your toddler ate your cosmetics
sick little girl being examined by doctor
In Case of Emergency
Call 911 right away if the individual collapses, has a seizure, has trouble breathing, or can't be awakened.

Contact the National Capital Poison Center for medical advice at:
1-800-222-1222

About the Poison Control Center help line

What information will I need when I call the Poison Control Center?

The Poison Control Center will ask you to provide basic information regarding the poison exposure in order to make accurate recommendations. The more specific the information you can provide, the better the Poison Center will be able to help you! All calls are free and confidential.

When you call, you will be asked the following questions:

  • What was the poison? (product name and strength if it is a medication).
  • How much of the poison was involved?
  • How is the person feeling now? (What symptoms is the person experiencing?)
  • What is the person's age, weight, and other health problems?
  • When did the exposure occur? 
  • What, if any, treatment was attempted for the poisoning? 
  • What is your zip code? (for geographic tracking of poisonings in the state)
How can I keep my child safe from poisoning?

Put the poison control number, 1-800-222-1222, on or near every home telephone and save it on your cell phone. Calls are free and the line is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Other tips include:

  • Keep all drugs in medicine cabinets or other childproof cabinets that young children cannot reach. Learn about proper medicine storage.
  • Turn on a light when you prepare medicines for children so that you know you have the correct amount of the right medicine.
  • Avoid taking medicine in front of children because they often copy adults.
  • Do not call medicine "candy."
  • Be aware of any legal or illegal drugs that guests may bring into your home. Do not let guests leave drugs where children can find them, for example, in a pillbox, purse, backpack, or coat pocket.
  • When you take medicines yourself, do not put your next dose on the counter or table where children can reach them.
  • Never leave children alone with household products or drugs. If you are using chemical products or taking medicine and you have to do something else, such as answer the phone, take any young children with you.
  • Do not leave household products out after using them. Return the products to a childproof cabinet as soon as you are done with them.
  • Identify poisonous plants in your house and yard and place them out of reach of children or remove them.
What if I am concerned about a pesticide exposure?

Pesticides are frequently used in household and agricultural applications to kill unwanted insects, rodents, or weeds. At home, remember to always follow the application instructions, store pesticides out of reach of children and properly dispose of unwanted pesticides. The National Pesticide Information Center has resources for health effects of common household and agricultural pesticides as well as information on pesticide exposures, spills and cleanup.

In Idaho, the State Department of Agriculture (ISDA) is the agency responsible for regulating pesticide usage in agriculture. If you are concerned with an accidental pesticide exposure from an agricultural application, please contact ISDA for more information. 

*If you are concerned that an individual’s health is immediately at risk after a pesticide exposure, call 911 or Poison Control at 1-800-222-1222. Remove any contaminated clothing and rinse or shower with clean water.

What should I do for a pet that may have poison exposure?

The Poison Control center will refer calls about pets to the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center.

The ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center (APCC) is a resource for any animal poison-related emergency, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. If you think your pet may have ingested a potentially poisonous substance, call (888) 426-4435. A $65 consultation fee may be applied to your credit card for their service.

External resources

External Resources
Serves Idaho, Nebraska, Wyoming, American Samoa, and the Federated States of Micronesia.
By the Numbers
# 1
Cause of poisoning among Idahoans age 20 years and older:
Ethanol (in the form of alcoholic beverages)
# 2
Cause of poisoning among Idahoans age 20 years and older:
Sedatives
60%
Calls received by the Rocky Mountain Poison and Drug Center associated with poisoning episodes in children 5 years-of-age and younger