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Study: 700,000 people, mostly children, end up in ER every year for pharmaceutical drug poisoning

Wednesday, March 23, 2011 by: Ethan A. Huff, staff writer
Tags: drug poisoning, children, health news

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(NaturalNews) Besides motor vehicle accidents, the second leading cause of injury death in the US is drug-related poisoning, according to a new study published in The American Journal of Emergency Medicine. The study indicates that nearly 700,000 people end up in emergency rooms (ER) every year from pharmaceutical drug poisoning -- and most of these visits involve young children.

Roughly 28,000 people die every year due to drug-related poisoning, and the highest poisoning rates are among children under five years of age. Forty-three percent of all these poisonings are caused by antidepressant drugs and common painkillers, many of which are available without a prescription. And all this death occurs under the watch of the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) and the American Association of Poison Control Centers (AAPCC) are together participating in Poison Prevention Week, an awareness campaign designed to warn the public about the poisons that lurk in their homes -- which apparently is dominated primarily by pharmaceutical drugs.

According to a recent press release, the groups are asking the US Congress to continue funding the 57 poison control centers across the US that assist the public with poison emergencies. The cost of funding these centers is more then $29 million a year, which of course comes from taxpayers.

"People are abusing prescription drugs and over-the-counter drugs, and it's a serious and growing problem," said Dr. Sandra Schneider, president of ACEP. "Very young children had the highest rate of unintentional drug poisoning, which is a wake-up call for parents to make sure their medicines are out of reach."

Besides the millions spent every year operating the poison control centers, the costs associated with the hundreds of thousands of drug-related ER visits is even more astronomical, topping $1.4 billion in 2007. Such a figure makes sense to anyone who has ever been to the ER and actually seen the final bill -- a single visit can literally cost thousands of dollars.

To sum things up, the actually yearly cost of FDA-approved drugs to society is almost 700,000 ER visits, 28,000 deaths, and roughly $1.5 billion. And the FDA really could not care less, as the agency seems to spend most of its time censoring the truth about medicinal foods and herbs, raiding family farms, and targeting dietary supplements for elimination (http://www.naturalnews.com/the_FDA.html).

Sources for this story include:

http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/drug...

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