(CNN) – Every year, nearly 60,000 American children are accidentally poisoned by medicine. The group, Safe Kids Worldwide, surveyed caregivers about storing medications in the home. They found that for many parents, knowledge doesn’t translate into behavior.
Dr. Marceé White of Children’s National Medical Center said, “9 out of 10 parents agree that medicines should be kept up and away, out of sight for kids. However, seven out of ten parents report keeping medicine on a counter or on a ledge where kids can easily access them.”
The reason most often cited, having too much to do and too little time.
Dr. White said, “Parents are busy and sometimes convenience over-rules caution. When you look at emergency department visits for accidental medicine poisonings, many parents report that they only looked away for less than a minute.”
Dr. White said eye-catching colors can appeal to children. “Those medications can look like candy or something very appetizing to a child, and they can get into that and get into trouble.”
White also recommends caregivers follow a simple rule every time. “We want parents to make sure that they store medications – all medications – over-the counter medications, prescription drugs, vitamins and supplements up high and out of sight and reach after every single use.”