In the 1970’s there were 32 “Poison Control Centers” located in acute care hospital pharmacies and emergency departments throughout the state of New Jersey. The downfall, however, was that these pharmacy centers were not operational twenty-four hours a day; little or no records of calls were kept and no center had a budget assigned to it.
In response to a federal initiative to develop regional emergency medical services, New Jersey began a task force to look into how to provide regionalized poison control center services. Legislation was passed that called upon the New Jersey Department of Health to develop a drug and poison information program. In February 1983, the New Jersey Poison Information and Education System (NJPIES) opened.
Today NJPIES is the state’s only certified poison control center and provides comprehensive services 24 hour a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year to New Jersey residents.