Study Finds Single-Dose Packaging Decreases Accidental Ingestions in Kids

Researchers find that better packaging is the key to preventing unintentional pharmaceutical exposures in kids.

Accidental Ingestion
Accidental Ingestion

Intentional opioid abuse has been a hot topic in the United States for years, but what about unintentional ingestion? According to Dr. George Sam Wang, a pediatric emergency doctor at Children’s Hospital Colorado, “Unintentional pharmaceutical exposures in kids are a continuing problem, representing about half of calls to poison control centers.” According to a recent HealthDay article, Wang’s new study demonstrates the solution to accidental overdosing in kids lies in the packaging.

The study, published May 3 in Pediatrics, examined poison control calls related to accidental ingestions of buprenorphine-naloxone, a common narcotic pain reliever. The team looked at three specific time periods: before the introduction of single-dose packaging, during the time pharmaceutical companies were converting to single-dose packaging, and after single-dose packaging was widely available. Results found single-dose packaging prompted a 79% decrease in the number of unintentional ingestion of buprenorphine.

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