WA Poisons Information Centre

The WA Poisons Information Centre (WAPIC) is an emergency phone service to the states of Western Australia and South Australia and the Northern Territory providing management advice in cases of suspected poisoning and known poisonings. Advice is also provided on drug information and poisoning prevention.

The WAPIC handles on average 40,000 phone calls annually. Twenty five percent of the calls are received from medical professionals managing cases of poisoning. Seventy five percent of calls are received from the general public, carers and other personnel. Specialists in Poisons Information are trained to handle cases involving exposures to pharmaceuticals, veterinary medicines, household products, industrial products, pesticides, plants, mushrooms, and bites and stings from marine and land animals.

The WA Clinical Toxicology service is closely aligned with the WAPIC and provides medical consultation to medical callers managing serious and complex cases.

If a person is unconscious but still breathing:

  • Call 000 for an ambulance
  • Place the person in the recovery position

If the person is unconscious but not breathing normally:

  • Call 000 and start Cardio-Pulmonary resuscitation (CPR)

First aid

Swallowed

If the person is alert:

  • Do NOT induce vomiting.
  • Bring the product or medicine container to the phone if you can.

Skin exposure

  • Carefully remove contaminated clothing.
  • Thoroughly wash and rinse the skin with running water.

Eye exposure

  • Rinse eyes with running water from a cup or a jug for 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Do NOT apply eye drops.

Inhalation exposure

  • Get the person to fresh air, without placing yourself at risk.
  • Avoid breathing fumes.

Do NOT try to rescue an unconscious person, where a highly toxic or unknown gas is involved, without a breathing apparatus. You may become a victim yourself.

Bites and stings

Last Updated: 23/09/2019