THAILAND / POISON CONTROL CENTRE

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14-Jul-2021 00:04:35
Globally, poisoning is an under-recognized and under reported major public health concern. While the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends that all countries establish and strengthen poisons centres, fewer than half of WHO Member States have one. WHO

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STORY: THAILAND / POISON CONTROL CENTRE
TRT: 4:35
SOURCE: WHO
RESTRICTIONS: PLEASE CREDIT WHO ON SCREEN
LANGUAGE: THAI / NATS

DATELINE: 16 FEBRUARY 2021, BANGKOK, THAILAND

SHOTLIST:

16 FEBRUARY 2021, BANGKOK, THAILAND

1. Med shot, sign reading “Ramathibodi Poison Center”
2. Close shot, screen in Ramathibodi Poison Center showing the status of calls received
3. Various shots, employees working at Ramathibodi
4. SOUNDBITE (Thai) Charuwan Sriapha, Chief Information Scientist, Ramathibodi Poison Center:
"When the phone rings, we start with collecting data, what toxin the patient was exposed to, what the symptoms are, what the doctor finds.”
5. Various shots, employees at Ramathibodi discuss images of potentially poisonous animals
6. SOUNDBITE (Thai) Charuwan Sriapha, Chief Information Scientist, Ramathibodi Poison Center:
"If there’s a specific antidote to that poison, we will start checking for the antidote in our programme.”
7. Med shot, an employee at Ramathibodi Poison Centre puts test kits in a box
8. Close shot, test kits on display
9. Various shots, samples in a display case
10. SOUNDBITE (Thai) Charuwan Sriapha, Chief Information Scientist, Ramathibodi Poison Center:
"We will evaluate if the patient can go where the antidote is, meaning to transfer them to the provincial hospital. Or the antidote has to go to the patient, meaning the provincial hospital must first deliver the antidote to the patient.”
11. Med shot, an ambulance outside the Faculty of Medicine Ramathibodi Hospital
12. Various shots, a health worker carries an antidote to the ambulance and prepares it for transport
13. Wide shot, traffic on a street in Bangkok
14. Various shots, Krittithee Thongtwein and his mother Yingluck walk together along a street in Bangkok
15. Wide shot, exterior of Ramathibodi Poison Center
16. Various shots, Krittithee and his mother consult with a health worker at Ramathibodi
17. SOUNDBITE (Thai) Dr Satariya Trakulsrichai, Clinical Toxicologist, Ramathibodi Poison Center:
"He [Krittithee] was accidentally shot with a modified gun with pellet shot. He underwent an emergency surgery as pellets penetrated through the intestine. Moreover, many pellets were lodged in his spine.”
18. Various shots, Krittithee and his mother consult with a health worker at Ramathibodi
19. SOUNDBITE (Thai) Dr Satariya Trakulsrichai, Clinical Toxicologist, Ramathibodi Poison Center:
"The doctors decided to send his blood sample to test for blood lead level because most bullets are made from lead. They found that Krittithee’s blood level was very high, 156 microgram per decilitre. Generally, the blood lead levels that are considered normal is 5-10 mcg/dl.”
20. Various shots, health workers at Ramathibodi examine images of Krittithee’s injury
21. SOUNDBITE (Thai) Dr Satariya Trakulsrichai, Clinical Toxicologist, Ramathibodi Poison Center:
"Today, he is able to walk and handle his daily activities, living life as normal. He can go back to school. He can dream. He said he wants to be an accountant when he grows up. He gets to be an ordinary child again.”
22. Med shot, Krittithee and his mother have a meal together at a restaurant in Bangkok

STORYLINE:

Globally, poisoning is an under-recognized and under reported major public health concern. While the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends that all countries establish and strengthen poisons centres, fewer than half of WHO Member States have one.

In Thailand, there are more than 15,000 cases of poisoning each year. Timely access to information and treatment are key to surviving and recovering from poisoning.

Opened in Bangkok in 1996, Ramathibodi Poison Center advises and assists with the prevention, diagnosis and management of poisoning.

SOUNDBITE (Thai) Charuwan Sriapha, Chief Information Scientist, Ramathibodi Poison Center:
"When the phone rings, we start with collecting data, what toxin the patient was exposed to, what the symptoms are, what the doctor finds.”

Via a 24/7 hotline, staff at Ramathibodi answer questions about potential poisoning from different sources. They then provide an assessment of whether a particular exposure is hazardous, and information about the kind of treatment that should be given, if necessary.

SOUNDBITE (Thai) Charuwan Sriapha, Chief Information Scientist, Ramathibodi Poison Center:
"We will evaluate if the patient can go where the antidote is, meaning to transfer them to the provincial hospital. Or the antidote has to go to the patient, meaning the provincial hospital must first deliver the antidote to the patient.”

Access to antidotes or antivenoms that can counteract poisoning is often life-saving. In 2020, Ramathibodi consulted on more than 29,000 unique cases. More than half were related to drug and pesticide poisonings.

SOUNDBITE (Thai) Dr Satariya Trakulsrichai, Clinical Toxicologist, Ramathibodi Poison Center:
"He [Krittithee] was accidentally shot with a modified gun with pellet shot. He underwent an emergency surgery as pellets penetrated through the intestine. Moreover, many pellets were lodged in his spine.”

When he was seven years old, Krittithee was referred to Ramathibodi after high levels of lead were found in his blood as a result of being accidently shot in the leg with a lead bullet.

SOUNDBITE (Thai) Dr Satariya Trakulsrichai, Clinical Toxicologist, Ramathibodi Poison Center:
"The doctors decided to send his blood sample to test for blood lead level because most bullets are made from lead. They found that Krittithee’s blood level was very high, 156 microgram per decilitre. Generally, the blood lead levels that are considered normal is 5-10 mcg/dl.”

He underwent several years of treatment at the centre. Prompt clinical diagnosis and laboratory analysis helped to confirm his need for specialized antidotes to counter the effects of lead poisoning.

SOUNDBITE (Thai) Dr Satariya Trakulsrichai, Clinical Toxicologist, Ramathibodi Poison Center:
"Today, he is able to walk and handle his daily activities, living life as normal. He can go back to school. He can dream. He said he wants to be an accountant when he grows up. He gets to be an ordinary child again.”

Ramathibodi is an example of how a poisons centre can positively impact the health system of not only a country but an entire region. The centre coordinates the procurement and improved distribution of antidotes in South-East Asia through an initiative to improve availability of these essential medicines. The initiative also encourages shared learning of technical expertise.

Ramathibodi is a WHO Collaborating Centre for the Prevention and Control of Poisoning and networks with other poisons centres around the world. WHO recently published guidelines for establishing a poisons centre.
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