North Carolina Poisoning Statistics
In 2015, 1,370 North Carolinians died due to unintentional poisoning. About half of these deaths are caused by prescription opioids, heroin, or cocaine.¹
- In 2016-2017, NC Poison Control answered 151,420 calls from the public and from healthcare providers across the state.
- Of those calls, 41,594 were from doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and other healthcare providers who needed assistance with the diagnosis, management, and treatment of poisoned patients.
- Close to 70% of all calls about a poisoning exposure were managed at the site of the call, which is usually at home.
- Pain relievers were the most commonly called about drug substance (24,422 calls).
- Household cleaners were the most commonly called about non-drug substance (11,229 calls).
For more detailed North Carolina poisoning statistics, view the NC Poison Control 2014/2015 Biennial Report.
Click below to see previous biennial reports:
National Poisoning Statistics
In the United States, poisoning is the leading cause of unintentional injury death, and nearly 9 out of 10 of poisoning deaths are caused by drugs.² See an injury grid highlighting the top causes of unintentional injury death.
- In the United States, a poison control center answers a call about a suspected or actual poisoning every 14 seconds.³
- In 2016, U.S. poison control centers received over 2.1 million poison exposure calls, over 490,000 information calls, and over 54,000 animal exposure calls.³
- The death rate nationwide due to unintentional poisonings is 12.3 deaths per 100,000 population.4
- Although children under the age of 6 were involved in about half of poisoning exposures in 2016, they comprised only 1.7% of poisoning deaths. Most (66.9%) of deaths occurred among 20-59 year olds.³
- Cosmetics and personal care products were the most frequently involved substances in pediatric (5 years and younger) poisoning exposures in 2016.³
- Pain relievers were the most frequently involved substances in poisoning exposures overall in 2016.³
For more detailed national poisoning statistics, view the 2016 American Association of Poison Control Centers' National Poison Data System's Annual Report.
1 NC Injury and Violence Prevention Branch, "Prescription & Drug Overdoses" fact sheet
2 NCHS Data Brief, No.81, Dec. 2011
3 2016 Annual Report of the American Association of Poison Control Centers' National Poison Data System (NPDS)
4 CDC FactStats: Accidents or Unintentional Injuries