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Emergency Nurses Association Applauds House for Passage of Legislation to Fund Poison Control Centers

DES PLAINES, Ill., Jan. 10, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Emergency Nurses Association applauds the House of Representatives for passing H.R. 3527, the Poison Center Network Act, by a vote of 388-18.

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This important legislation reauthorizes funding for the operation of our nation's 57 poison control centers for fiscal years 2015 – 2019. The bill provides support for the centers' 24-hour toll-free phone number; the national media campaign which educates the public and health care providers about poison prevention and the toll-free number; and the State Grant Program, which is used to help fund the poison control centers. These are usually located at universities and regional medical centers.

"Today, the House of Representatives stepped up and passed an important piece of legislation for both victims of poisoning and for emergency nurses who work with poison control centers when treating hundreds of poisoning cases every single day," said 2014 ENA President Deena Brecher, MSN, RN, APN, ACNS-BC, CEN, CPEN. "I want to congratulate Representative Lee Terry (R-NE), the bill's sponsor, and Representative Eliot Engel (D-NY) for introducing this bill and their support of the life-saving work undertaken by poison centers."

Poisoning is the second most common form of unintentional death in the United States and the death rate from unintentional poisoning has been rising steadily since 1992. In 2010, there were 33,041 deaths nationwide from unintentional poisoning. Children are especially vulnerable to injury by poisoning. Each day, 300 children are treated for poisoning in the ED and two will die.

Poison Control Centers (PCCs) receive approximately 3.6 million calls each year, including 720,000 calls from nurses and doctors who rely on PCCs for an immediate assessment and expert advice on poisoning cases.

Now that the Poison Center Network Act has been approved by the House of Representatives, the next step is consideration by the Senate.

About the Emergency Nurses Association

ENA, which has more than 40,000 members worldwide, is the only professional nursing association dedicated to defining the future of emergency nursing and emergency care through advocacy, expertise, innovation and leadership. Founded in 1970, ENA develops and disseminates education and practice standards and guidelines, and affords consultation to both private and public entities regarding emergency nurses and their practice. Additional information is available at ENA's Web site, www.ena.org.

SOURCE Emergency Nurses Association

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