JK News Today

Jammu, June 13: To cater to the people of Jammu and Kashmir, a Poison Information Centre (PIC) and Adverse Drug Reaction Monitoring Centre were inaugurated by Hon’ble Prof (Dr) Y.K Gupta, President of AIIMS, Jammu in the august presence of Prof (Dr) Shakti Kumar Gupta, founder Executive Director and CEO of AIIMS Jammu, Deans, Associate Dean and senior officials on 13.06.2024 at AIIMS, Vijaypur, Jammu.

On occasion, Prof. Y. K. Gupta, in his address, stressed that the Poison Information Centre will play a crucial role in protecting public health by providing timely assistance, promoting poison awareness, and facilitating collaboration among stakeholders to prevent and mitigate the impact of poison-related incidents. He also emphasized that ADR monitoring plays a vital role in safeguarding public health by detecting and preventing medication-related harm, promoting informed decision-making, and fostering collaboration among stakeholders in the healthcare ecosystem.

The Executive Director and CEO, Prof Shakti Kumar Gupta, stressed that AIIMS, Jammu not only provide the service but will also take leadership in capacity building of other health centres and hospitals in poison information services so that the hazards of poisoning are drastically reduced in the Union Territories of Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh.

Dr. Sonia Shinde Mahajan, Assistant Professor and Officer In-charge, Department of Pharmacology and Deputy Co-ordinator ADR Monitoring Centre, informed that the Poison Information Centre is a specialized unit that is equipped with evidence-based software that will enable the on-duty Pharmacologists to provide the latest evidence-based information for the management of the poisonings. She said that the center will have dedicated telephone numbers, (both landline and mobile, that will be communicated in due course of time), on which queries regarding any accidental exposure to or intentional use of poisons will be received from people as well as neighboring hospitals. Dr. Sonia elaborated that pertinent information will be provided to the caller at the earliest after receiving, assessing, and analyzing the query. Initially, the centre will be operational from 9 am to 5 pm and in due course of time shall be made functional round the clock. In the future, the Centre will be upgraded to a Poison Information and Management Centre that will keep stock of antidotes for common poisonings and make them available to needy cases.

Medicines used for treatment are liable to produce adverse effects, that may occur whenever they are taken. Dr. Ritesh Kumar, Assistant Professor, Pharmacology and Co-ordinator, ADR Monitoring Centre, AIIMS, Jammu, emphasized that adverse drug reactions (ADRs) lead to tremendous healthcare expenditure but, at the same time, are preventable if timely identified and reported. He informed that both healthcare professionals and consumers can report any unwanted effects they experience after the use of medicines to the ADR Monitoring Centre of AIIMS, Vijaypur, Jammu. The numbers for reporting these shall be shared shortly. The Centre at AIIMS, Vijaypur, Jammu, will work towards reporting ADRs and help reduce the harm caused by medicines. Dr. Sartaj Hussain, Assistant Professor, Pharmacology & Faculty In-charge of ADR causality assessment, and Dr. Anna Javed, Assistant Professor, Pharmacology & Faculty In-charge OPD & IPD ADR Reporting, along with the senior residents and nursing officers were also present on the occasion.

Thus, the ADR Monitoring Centre and the Poison Information Centre will be developed as centres of excellence to cater to the poisoning-related needs of the people of the near as well as far-flung areas of Jammu, Kashmir, and Ladakh. Their main focus shall be to reduce the harm that occurs due to adverse drug reactions due to medicines and poisonings, which are major public health problems leading to patient morbidity and mortality. Overall, the Poison Information Centre will play a critical role in safeguarding public health by preventing poisonings, offering prompt assistance in emergencies, and promoting poison awareness and education.