Safe Kids in Action: Teaching Families about Medication Safety in Northeast Oklahoma

Safe Kids Worldwide has a network of 400 coalitions around the United States that work every day to help keep kids in their communities healthy and safe. As part of our Safe Kids in Action series, Safe Kids will feature the incredible coordinators, teachers, nurses, doctors, first responders, business leaders, legislators and parents who make up our coalitions. In this segment, we are proud to highlight the heroes of Safe Kids Tulsa for their work in medication safety. Support for the development of the Medication Safety Program comes from McNeil Consumer Healthcare, the makers of Children's Tylenol®.

Almost every minute of every day, there’s a call to a poison control center because a young child got into medicine. Safe Kids Tulsa is working with local partners such as The Children’s Hospital at Saint Francis, St. John Medical Center, the St. Benedict’s Parish Nurse Program and the Oklahoma Poison Control Center to prevent these occurrences in their community. Coordinator Beth Washington works with her coalition members and volunteers to organize interactive community events to raise awareness about medication safety and educate students, new parents, teen moms, grandparents and other caregivers.

With the help of coalition member and parish nurse Jeanne Draughon, Safe Kids Tulsa has also been able to provide education in schools and several senior centers throughout northeastern Oklahoma. Jeanne refers to one of her favorite initiatives as “back door ministry,” in which she places safety information on the back doors of bathroom stalls in local parishes.

Safe Kids Tulsa has reached more than 10,600 parents and caregivers with important medication safety information over the past three years, and the program continues to grow. One parent who attended a medication safety presentation shared that her teenager took Tylenol for a headache and then later wanted to take another over-the-counter pain medication. Thanks to the information she learned from Safe Kids, this parent knew that her child should not take more than one medicine with the same active ingredient. She compared the Drug Facts labels of the two medications and found that they both contained the active ingredient acetaminophen, and decided not to let her child take the second medicine. After hearing this, another caregiver said that she had not thought about reading medicine labels to make sure family members did not take more medicine than they should. This is just one of many examples of how Safe Kids coalitions are making an impact in their communities.

Safe Kids Tulsa, thank you for working with families to help keep kids safe around medicine