Tennessee Poison Center
1313 21st Avenue South
501 Oxford House
Nashville TN 37232-4632
Poison Specialist answering Poison Help hotline call
Mission Statement
Tennessee Poison Center is dedicated to the prevention of poisonings in the home, workplace and environment. The Poison Center provides clinical advice to the public and healthcare community for the treatment of exposures to drug, chemical, plant or envenomation. Tennessee Poison Center's goals are to prevent poisonings, minimize poisoning complications and reduce the number of poison related deaths through telephone hotline intervention, public education, professional education and clinical research.
Leadership
CEO/Executive Director Dr. Donna Seger
Board Chair Dr. Laurie Lawrence
Board Chair Company Affiliation Vanderbilt University Hospital
History & Background
Year of Incorporation 1987
Former Names
Middle Tennessee Poison Center
Organization's type of tax exempt status 501-C3
Financial Summary
 
 
Projected Expenses $1,983,502.00
Projected Annual Revenue $1,983,502.00 (2014)
Statements
Mission Tennessee Poison Center is dedicated to the prevention of poisonings in the home, workplace and environment. The Poison Center provides clinical advice to the public and healthcare community for the treatment of exposures to drug, chemical, plant or envenomation. Tennessee Poison Center's goals are to prevent poisonings, minimize poisoning complications and reduce the number of poison related deaths through telephone hotline intervention, public education, professional education and clinical research.
Background
Tennessee Poison Center is a comprehensive poison information resource for the public and healthcare professionals. Physicians, hospitals, public health departments and the public depend on Tennessee Poison Center to provide state-of-the-art emergency advice and treatment information 24-hours-a-day, 365 days a year.
Prior to 1987, emergency poison exposure calls in Tennessee were routed to county 911 services or area hospital emergency departments. The staff that answered these calls had neither the knowledge nor training to give advice or treatment recommendations. Vanderbilt University Medical Center established the Middle Tennessee Poison Center (MTPC) in 1987. As other Tennessee poison centers closed, MTPC expanded its service area to 56 counties in middle, upper east and southeast Tennessee. In February, 2004, the Southern Poison Center in Memphis closed, and Middle Tennessee Poison Center began providing poison control coverage for all Tennesseans. The name changed to Tennessee Poison Center to reflect the statewide coverage.
 
In 2013, the Poison Center provided assistance to 84,020 individuals who called the Poison Help telephone hotline, 1-800-222-1222, requesting either emergency first aid treatment advice for a possible poison exposure or information regarding a poison. The medical professionals answering the calls are pharmacists, registered nurses or physicians with special training and certification in managing poison exposures. These professionals are employees of the Poison Center.
 
Fortunately, more than 74% of the poison exposure calls received are given first aid treatment recommendations to safely manage the emergency at home. This avoids unnecessary emergency room or physician office visits and saves health care dollars. For those individuals who need further medical care, the poison specialist refers the patient to an area hospital and assists the hospital staff with the patient’s treatment. Not only does the Poison Center assist in daily poison emergencies, it also is a vital part of our State’s disaster plan. In the event of a chemical disaster, Tennessee residents will call the Tennessee Poison Center for antidote and decontamination information.
 
In addition to the Poison Help hotline program, Tennessee Poison Center actively conducts community outreach and poison prevention education programs to the public and healthcare professionals. There are no fees charged for either program.
Impact
Poison victims call the Poison Help medical telephone hotline in a poison emergency resulting in: A decrease in their level of immediate crisis, an increase in their knowledge of treatment by utilizing first aid recommendations, and a savings of health care dollars by calling the Poison Help hotline rather than visiting a hospital or physician’s office. It is estimated that Tennessee Poison Center saves the state of Tennessee over $5 million yearly in emergency room fees.
 
Three most significant goals for the current year: 1. Provide poison control coverage for all Tennesseans according to the standards of the American Association of Poison Control Centers. 2. Provide bioterrorism surveillance for all 95 counties. 3. Collaborate with the University of Tennessee Agricultural Extension Educators to provide poison prevention education to residents in all 95 Tennessee counties.
 
Three most significant accomplishments of the past year: 1. Tennessee Poison Center remained the sixth busiest poison control center in the U.S. 2. Tennessee Poison Center presented poison prevention education to 6 million Tennesseans through a partnership with the U.T. Extension Educators.
Needs Tennessee Poison Center's calls increased from 61,000 calls in 2002 to 84,000 calls in 2013. As calls increase, funding is the primary concern. TPC is required by the American Association of Poison Control Centers to add staff if call volume increases to a certain level. Therefore, funding for salary and fringe benefit expenses is crucial to the stability of the center. Another need is to provide poison education to non-English speaking residents.
Service Categories
Primary Organization Category Mental Health & Crisis Intervention / Hot Lines & Crisis Intervention
Secondary Organization Category Public Safety, Disaster Preparedness and Relief / Disaster Preparedness and Relief Service
Tertiary Organization Category Public Safety, Disaster Preparedness and Relief /
Areas of Service
Areas Served
TN
TN - Bedford
TN - Cannon
TN - Cheatham
TN - Clay
TN - Coffee
TN - Cumberland
TN - Davidson
TN - Dekalb
TN - Dickson
TN - Fentress
TN - Franklin
TN - Giles
TN - Hickman
TN - Houston
TN - Humphreys
TN - Jackson
TN - Lawrence
TN - Lewis
TN - Lincoln
TN - Macon
TN - Marshall
TN - Maury
TN - Montgomery
TN - Moore
TN - Overton
TN - Perry
TN - Pickett
TN - Putnam
TN - Robertson
TN - Rutherford
TN - Smith
TN - Stewart
TN - Sumner
TN - Trousdale
TN - Van Buren
TN - Warren
TN - Wayne
TN - White
TN - Williamson
TN - Wilson
Tennessee Poison Center serves all 95 counties.
Board Chair Statement
Tennessee Poison Center has an 9 member Community Board that acts as an advisory board rather than a governing board. The board members are community volunteers interested in healthcare issues. The Community Board members are asked to do the following:
Keep informed about TPC's mission, goals, programs and development.
Promote TPC within their circle of influence.
Share their ideas with staff about the growth and improvement of TPC.
Assist in special problem solving for TPC.
Participate in fundraising efforts, including participation in annual giving and reviewing of grant proposals
 
As the sole provider of poison control service in the state, Tennessee Poison Center is faced with a increase in demand for service while funding this demand remains a challenge. TPC continues to research funding opportunities in the public and private sectors and is dedicated to being a financially stable poison control center.
CEO Statement
Poisoning is the leading cause of injury death for Tennessee residents, surpassing motor vehicle accidents.. Everyone, from infants to older adults, is at risk for accidental poisoning. Physicians, hospitals, public health departments, and the public depend on Tennessee Poison Center to provide state-of-the-art emergency advice and treatment information 24-hours-a-day, 365 days of the year.
In 2013, the poison specialists at Tennessee Poison Center answered 84,020 calls from residents who needed help in a poison emergency. Our outreach staff and the U.T. Extension Educators presented poison prevention programs to 40,000 children and adults. All calls to the Poison Help hotline and poison prevention programs are free of charge. Through first aid treatment advice and follow up by telephone, 74% of poison exposure calls are managed safely at home. Unnecessary visits to hospital emergency rooms and physicians’ offices are avoided and valuable healthcare dollars are saved. For every $1 spent on a call to a poison center, $14 dollars is saved in other medical costs.
 
Also, the Tennessee Poison Center is a partner in the Nation’s war on terrorism. Tennessee Poison Center provides public and professional education, information and treatment advice, and 24 hour surveillance for bioterrorism.
 
In January 2004, the Southern Poison Center in Memphis closed due to lack of funding and the Middle Tennessee Poison Center began providing poison control coverage for all Tennesseans. The organization’s name changed to “Tennessee Poison Center” to reflect the statewide coverage.
 
Tennessee Poison Center depends on financial support from a variety of sources, such as federal HRSA grants, institutional funding, state contributions and community donations, in order to provide statewide poison control service. However, as demand for poison control service increases throughout Tennessee, additional funding is needed to support this vital community service. Tennessee Poison Center is a valuable community resource that is essential to the health and safety of every Tennessee resident.
Programs
Description The Poison Help hotline 1-800-222-1222 is a toll-free medical hotline for poison victims & their families available 24 hours a day, 365 days per year. Poison specialists give first aid treatment advice or referrals in the event of a poison emergency.
Budget 1,983,502
Category
Population Served , ,
Short Term Success The short term success of the program is to minimize poisoning complications and reduce the number of poison related deaths through telephone hotline intervention.
Long term Success The long term success of the program will be measured by the reduction of poisonings in Tennessee.
Program Success Monitored By

The Medical Director continuously reviews clinical information and evaluates the effectiveness of therapies. These evaluations are provided to the poison specialists to aid in responding to similar calls. A Customer Satisfaction Survey is made yearly calling random poison hotline callers and asking questions regarding their satisfaction with the service they received.

Examples of Program Success Success is measured by the number of persons who are aware of the Poison Help hotline and call in a poison emergency. In order to be nationally certified by the American Association of Poison Control Centers, a poison control center must receive 7 calls per 1,000 persons. The Center should strive for 9 calls per 1,000 persons. Tennessee Poison Center receives 9 calls in 92 of the 95 Tennessee counties. This data demonstrates that residents are aware of the Poison Help hotline and are calling in a poison emergency.
Description Anyone can be a poison victim. TPC provides free poison prevention programs and literature distribution. The free programs and literature teach how to identify a poison, how to avoid becoming a poison victim and how to respond in a poison emergency.
Budget 1,983,502
Category
Population Served , ,
Description Tennessee Poison Center is the only organization in Tennessee that provides statewide surveillance for chemical or biological terrorism. Every 5 minutes symptom data from TPC is sent to Washington, DC review regarding the possibility of bioterrorism.
Budget 1,983,502
Category
Population Served , Adults,
CEO Comments Recent CDC data has documented poisoning as the #1 leading cause of injury death for Tennessee residents, surpassing motor vehicle accidents. Tennessee Poison Center is committed to reduce the number of poison related deaths in Tennessee.
Foundation Comments The agency budget covers both programs of the Center. The two programs are interlinked and depend on one another, hence no breakout budget for each program.
Board Chair
Board Chair Dr. Laurie Lawrence
Company Affiliation Vanderbilt University Hospital
Term Jan 2008 to May 2013
Email laurie.lawrence@vanderbilt.edu
Board Members
NameAffiliationStatus
Dr. Kim Barker Ayes Lipscomb University Collegel of PharmacyVoting
Elena Camacho Byrd Community VolunteerVoting
Judy Gaffron Community VolunteerVoting
Sarah Haverstick Safe Kids of the Cumberland ValleyVoting
Janie Hughart Community VolunteerVoting
Judy Kovach UT ExtensionVoting
Dr. Laurie Lawrence Vanderbilt University HospitalVoting
Nate Parrish Mid TN Icee
Dr. Alice Rothman Vanderbilt Children's hospitalVoting
Board Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 0
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 10
Hispanic/Latino 1
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 0
Board Demographics - Gender
Male 4
Female 7
Unspecified 0
Governance
Board Term Lengths 3
Board Term Limits 0
Board Meeting Attendance % 38%
Does the organization have written Board Selection Criteria? No
Does the organization have a written Conflict of Interest Policy? No
Does the Board include Client Representation? Yes
Number of Full Board Meetings Annually 5
Standing Committees
Risk Management Provisions
Accident & Injury Coverage
Commercial General Liability
Computer Equipment & Software
Corporal Punishment Liability
Directors & Officers Policy
Disability Insurance
Employee Benefits Liability
Employment Practices Liability
General Property Coverage
Life Insurance
Medical Health Insurance
Medical Malpractice
Professional Liability
Workers Compensation & Employers' Liability
Additional Board Members
NameAffiliation
Ms. Elena Camacho Community Volunteer
Ms. Judy Gaffron Vanderbilt Children's Hospital
Ms. Janie Hughart Westminster Pre-School
Ms. Judy Kovach UT Agricultural Extension Service
Dr. Laurie Lawrence Vanderbilt Hospital Emergency
Mr. Pete Murphy Self-employed Attorney
Mr. Nate Parrish MidTN Icee
Dr. Alice Rothman Vanderbilt Pediatrics
Dr. Seth Scholer Vanderbilt Children's Hospital
CEO Comments
Please note that Tennessee Poison's Center Community Board is an Advisory Board, rather than a Governing Board. There, some policies, such as conflict of Interest, are not applicable.
Tennessee Poison Center is governed by Vanderbilt University Medical Center with financial oversight authority of the VUMC Department of Finance. Strict accounting measures are applied to the financial management of the Poison Center. KPMG Peat Marwick performs an external audit every year for the entire Vanderbilt University hospital. Although the Poison Center is not specifically identified, one should note on page 1 of the Independent Auditor’s Report, that the Hospital’s financial statements fairly present the financial position of the Hospital.
Executive Director/CEO
Executive Director Dr. Donna Seger
Term Start July 1989
Email donna.seger@vanderbilt.edu
Experience Current Position: Medical Director, Tennessee Poison Center, Assistant Professor of Medicine and Emergency Medicine. Education: University of North Dakota, 1970-75, B.S. Medicine; University of North Dakota, 1976-77, M.D. Medicine; University of Cincinnati, 1978-80, Emergency Medicine Residency; University of Cincinnati, 1980-81, Clinical Fellow in Emergency Medicine, Toxicology Emphasis. Honors: 2001 Clinical Faculty Teaching Award; Emergency Medicine Residency. VUMC, Nashville, TN; 2001 Finalist, Marvin Runyon Leadership Award; 2002 Outstanding Consultant Award, Annals of Emergency Medicine; 2004 Clinical Faculty Teaching Award; Emergency Medicine Residency. VUMC, Nashville, TN. Professional Experience: 1996-99, American Academy of Clinical Toxicology (AACT), Board of Trustees; 2000-02, President Elect, American Academy of Clinical Toxicology; 2002-04, President, American Academy of Clinical Toxicology; 2000-present, Senior Editor Board, Journal of Toxicology & Clinical Toxicology.
Staff
Full Time Staff 12
Part Time Staff 5
Volunteers 106
Contractors 0
Retention Rate 94%
Plans & Policies
Does the organization have a documented Fundraising Plan? No
Does the organization have an approved Strategic Plan? Yes
Number of years Strategic Plan Considers 5
When was Strategic Plan adopted? Sept 2007
In case of a change in leadership, is a Management Succession plan in place? Yes
Does the organization have a Policies and Procedures Plan? No
Does the organization have a Nondiscrimination Policy? Yes
Affiliations
AffiliationYear
Center for Nonprofit Management Excellence Network2004
Awards
Award/RecognitionOrganizationYear
Frist Fdtn Award of Achievement - Team BuildingCenter for Nonprofit Management - Salute to Excellence2005
Senior Staff
Title Director of Community Outreach
Experience/Biography Education: University of the South, Sewanee, TN, 1973-77, B.A. English. Professional Experience: Director of Community Outreach, Tennessee Poison Center, 2000-present; Swan Ball Co-Chairman, Nashville, TN 1996-97; Director of Development, Harding Academy, 1983-87.
Title Managing Director
Experience/Biography
CEO Comments Please note that as a program of Vanderbilt University, Tennessee Poison Center adheres to the policies of the University. These policies may be found on the University's website. 
 
 
Fiscal Year
Fiscal Year Start July 01 2013
Fiscal Year End June 30 2014
Projected Revenue $1,983,502.00
Projected Expenses $1,983,502.00
Endowment Spending Policy N/A
Endowment Spending Percentage (if selected) 0%
Detailed Financials
Revenue SourcesHelpThe financial analysis involves a comparison of the IRS Form 990 and the audit report (when available) and revenue sources may not sum to total based on reconciliation differences. Revenue from foundations and corporations may include individual contributions when not itemized separately.
Fiscal Year201320122011
Foundation and
Corporation Contributions
$0$0$0
Government Contributions$1,175,795$1,240,043$1,352,064
Federal$345,995$410,243$522,264
State$829,800$829,800$829,800
Local$0$0$0
Unspecified$0$0$0
Individual Contributions$8,710$7,916$9,859
$147,279$146,408$183,301
$0$0$0
Investment Income, Net of Losses$0$0$0
Membership Dues$0$0$0
Special Events$0$0$0
Revenue In-Kind$0$0$0
Other$875,639$833,791$668,832
Expense Allocation
Fiscal Year201320122011
Program Expense$2,207,423$2,228,158$2,214,056
Administration Expense$0$0$0
Fundraising Expense$0$0$0
Payments to Affiliates$0$0$0
Total Revenue/Total Expenses1.001.001.00
Program Expense/Total Expenses100%100%100%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue0%0%0%
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201320122011
Total Assets$0$0$0
Current Assets$0$0$0
Long-Term Liabilities$0$0$0
Current Liabilities$0$0$0
Total Net Assets$0$0$0
Short Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201320122011
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities------
Long Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201320122011
Long-Term Liabilities/Total Assets------
Top Funding Sources
Fiscal Year201320122011
Top Funding Source & Dollar AmountGovernment Grants (Federal and State) $1,175,795Government Grants $1,240,043Goverment Grants $1,352,064
Second Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountHospital Donations $826,054Hospital Donations $804,040Hospital Partnerships $628,338
Third Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountUnited Way (Indirect) $147,279United Way (Indirect) $146,408United Way (Indirect) $183,301
IRS Letter of Exemption
Capital Campaign
Is the organization currently conducting a Capital Campaign for an endowment or the purchase of a major asset? No
Capital Campaign Goal $0.00
Capital Campaign Anticipated in Next 5 Years? No
State Charitable Solicitations Permit
Organizational Budgets and Other Documents
TN Poison Center 2012-2014 Budget2014
Organization Comments Tennessee Poison Center is a program of the Department of Pharmaceutical Services of Vanderbilt University Hospital, and, as such, does not receive a specific individual audit by an external accounting firm. Instead, the Poison Center’s revenue, expenses and budget are controlled by Vanderbilt University Medical Center’s Department of Finance. The monthly performance of the Poison Center’s financial activity is approved by Donna Seger, M.D., the Poison Center’s Director and monitored by Vanderbilt University Medical Center’s Department of Finance.
GivingMatters.com Financial Comments
Financial figures are taken from the organizational Budget, as directed by the organization.
 
This organization is a program of the Department of Pharmaceutical Services at Vanderbilt University Hospital. The Poison Center's revenue, expenses and budget are overseen by the Department of Finance who provided a letter attesting to this relationship. The Poison Center does not have an independent audit or 990.
 
For clarification on financial figures, contact the agency.
Financial documents provided by Vanderbilt Accounting office.
Comments provided by Laurel Fisher 1/29/14.
Nonprofit Tennessee Poison Center
Address 1313 21st Avenue South
501 Oxford House
Nashville, TN 372324632
Primary Phone (615) 936-0760
CEO/Executive Director Dr. Donna Seger
Board Chair Dr. Laurie Lawrence
Board Chair Company Affiliation Vanderbilt University Hospital
Year of Incorporation 1987
Former Names
Middle Tennessee Poison Center

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