California Poison Control Services 2011-2013

Investigator: Stuart Heard, PharmD
Sponsor: CALIF Emergency Med Svcs Authority

Location(s): United States


A single toll-free 800 number is available to all areas of California. By calling 1-800-222-1222 anywhere in California, you can obtain emergency information on:

  • Swallowing poison
  • Eye or skin irritation from toxic substances
  • Inhalation of noxious fumes or vapors
  • Animal, insect, snake and spider bites
  • Food or mushroom poisoning
  • Drug reactions
  • Attempted suicides or drug overdoses

Calls are handled quickly, accurately, professionally and free-of-charge all over the state 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

For decades, there have been many poison centers in California, each with its own phone number and individual way of providing service for a small area.

In 1997, a new system for providing uniform poison services for the entire state was developed. The University of California San FranciscoSchool of Pharmacy - Department of Clinical Pharmacyprovides administrative services for the California Poison Control System (CPCS). The CPCS combined the services of four existing poison centers:

Trained health care professionals, who have many years of valuable experience handling poison cases, staff all answering sites. The sites use identical telephones, computers, computer programs and databases, recording systems and automatic call distribution systems. They use uniform protocols and guidelines and have identical health education materials. The result is uniform quality poison information for the entire state.We have five toll free help lines

      Public Hotline, Medical Consultation Line, 9-1-1, Speech and Hearing Impaired TTY Line, and Public Education Line.

And many special services
24-hour interpreter service for over 100 languages, HazMat, Public Health and Pesticide Surveillance, Company Contracts, and more.