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Poison Center Helpline 1-800-222-1222

About Us

The Illinois Poison Center is dedicated to reducing harm due to poisoning. Our expert-led helpline provides immediate treatment recommendations to the public and healthcare providers. A trusted resource, IPC is here to help 24 hours a day year-round.

IPC is celebrating 70 years of protecting the health and safety of Illinoisans. Gov. JB Pritzker recently issued a proclamation commemorating the anniversary and recognizing the achievements of IPC’s “dedicated workers, past and present.”

IPC is a non-profit health service. Our vision is to eliminate poisoning harm in all Illinois communities. The IPC team includes experts in the field and highly trained clinical staff, who serve the public in a variety of ways:

  • Our free, confidential helpline,  1-800-222-1222 , provides trusted information and treatment advice on potentially harmful substances. IPC medical experts include physicians, nurses and pharmacists.
  • IPC is Illinois’ leading source of advanced toxicology training and consultation for healthcare professionals. We work closely with colleges and universities to provide toxicology curriculum for nursing, pharmacy and medical students.
  • We cultivate relationships with organizations and volunteers in their communities, who help  educate the public on potentially harmful substances and poison prevention.
  • In partnership with the American Association of Poison Control Centers, we monitor and provide surveillance for public health outbreaks that involve food, illicit drugs and infectious diseases such as H1N1, Ebola and Coronavirus. Information is shared with state and local health departments to assist in public health responses.
  • IPC staff, in collaboration with the Toxikon Consortium, collect and analyze data for abstracts, journal articles and book chapters to advance the knowledge of clinical and medical toxicology.

IPC saves lives and improves patient care by working hand-in-hand with Illinois hospitals. We give expert medical advice to doctors, nurses and paramedics treating patients exposed to potentially harmful substances. IPC saves the people of Illinois $60 million annually by resolving 92% of poisoning cases from the public over the phone. This success rate prevents unnecessary 911 calls and visits to a doctor or hospital.

We’re passionate about protecting the public from poisoning harm. IPC is the nation’s oldest poison center—and one of the largest. We are part of the Illinois Health and Hospital Association.

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Poison Center HelplineCalls are free and confidential.

  1. In Case of Emergency

    Call 911 if someone is unconscious or is having difficulty breathing.

  2. Remain Calm

    Most poison emergencies can be resolved quickly over the phone.

  3. Call the Helpline

    Call 1-800-222-1222 if you are concerned that you or someone else has been exposed to a potentially harmful substance.