Approximately 60,000 young children are brought to the emergency room each year because they got into medicines that were left within reach. Are all of the medicines in your home stored safely?

Keep your child safe.

Scroll down to find out how.

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Featured: 6 Things Dads Can Do to Be a Hero On Father’s Day


Today’s dads are playing a bigger role in the lives of their little ones at every age. So this Father’s Day, who better to give advice on household medicine safety than a doctor who's also a dad? The Director of the Medication Safety Program at CDC and manager of the CDC’s PROTECT Initiative Dan Budnitz has shared a few quick tips for preventing accidental medication overdoses—just in time for the holiday! Learn 6 things dads should know about medicine safety for their youngest kids.

1 Pick a place your children cannot reach.

Any medicine or vitamin can be dangerous if taken in the wrong way or by the wrong person, even medicine you buy without a prescription (known as over-the-counter medicines). Walk around your home and find the best place to store medicines up and away and out of sight of young children.

2 Put medicines up and away after each use.

Never leave medicines out on a kitchen counter or at a sick child’s bedside, even if you have to give the medicine again in a few hours. Always put every medicine and vitamin away every time you use it, including those you use every day.

3 Make sure the safety cap is locked.

Always relock the safety cap on medicine bottles. If the medicine has a locking cap that turns, twist it until you hear the “click” or until you can’t twist anymore. Remember, even though many medicines and vitamins have safety caps, children may be able to open them, so store all medicines up and away and out of sight.

4 Teach your children about medicine safety.

It’s important to teach your children what medicine is and why you or another caregiver must be the one to give it to them. Never tell your children medicine is candy, even if they don’t like to take their medicine.

5 Tell guests about medicine safety.

Always remind guests to keep purses, bags, or coats that have medicines in them up and away and out of sight when they’re in your home.

You can share this important information with your friends and family by sharing our resources with them on Facebook and Twitter.

6 Be prepared in case of an emergency.

Save the Poison Help number (800-222-1222) in all of your phones, including cell phones, so you have it when you need it – and make sure it’s available for your child’s babysitter or caregiver. Call Poison Help right away if you think your child might have gotten into a medicine or vitamin, even if you are not completely sure.

Poison Prevention Information

(800) 222-1222

About the Campaign

Families take medicines and vitamins to feel well or stay well. Any medicine or vitamin can be dangerous if taken in the wrong way or by the wrong person, even medicine you buy without a prescription (known as over-the-counter medicines). Up and Away and Out of Sight is an educational program to remind families about the importance of safe medicine storage. It is an initiative of PROTECT, in partnership with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Consumer Healthcare Products Association Educational Foundation and the below organizations.

Take Action

Help keep children safe by sharing these tips with your friends and family!

Government Agencies

  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
  • U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC)
  • U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
  • Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA)
  • U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)

National Partners

  • American Association of Poison Control Centers
  • Children’s Safety Network
  • Institute for Safe Medication Practices
  • National Consumers League
  • National Council on Patient Information and Education
  • National Safety Council
  • Poison Prevention Week Council
  • Safe Kids

Program Partners

  • American Academy of Family Physicians
  • American College of Preventive Medicine
  • Academic Pediatric Association
  • Safe States Alliance