City skyline during the day. Text reads: Toxicology Rotation at New York City Poison Control Center

Visiting Resident Medical Toxicology Rotation

Residents from any medical specialty may apply for a visiting resident medical toxicology rotation at the New York City Poison Control Center in Lower Manhattan (455 First Avenue). The rotation is a two-to-four week didactic elective in medical toxicology. It is open to residents from anywhere in the U.S. and most of the world.

The rotation will help residents become familiar with the structure and function of a regional Poison Control. Residents will also learn about various poisoning prevention techniques (including those for household, occupational and iatrogenic poisoning) and how to identify and manage an undifferentiated poisoned patient.

By the end of the rotation, residents will have an in-depth understanding of several common poisons and the role of a toxicology laboratory.

Duties and Learning Objectives

Residents will be responsible for daily punctual attendance. Activities and requirements include:

  • Daily Poison Center attendance and participation
  • Attending teaching sessions, faculty- and fellow-led rounds, lectures and conferences
  • Attending the weekly Toxicology Journal Club (or Consultants' Conference on the first Thursday of the month)
  • Preparing a brief presentation on a toxicology-related subject, in consultation with a fellow or faculty member during the rotation

Learning Objectives

  • Identify and discuss the initial identification and management of a poisoned patient.
  • Describe the rationale and role for the administration of oxygen, naloxone, dextrose, thiamine and other antidotes, and understand the risks associated with their administration.
  • Evaluate and apply the appropriate methods of gastrointestinal decontamination to a poisoned patient. Specifically, understand the risks, benefits, indications and contraindications of cathartics, whole bowel irrigation, orogastric lavage and activated charcoal.
  • Define toxic syndromes (toxidromes) for patients with opioid, sympathomimetic, anticholinergic, and cholinergic agent poisoning.
  • Create a differential diagnosis for drugs causing abnormal vital signs. Specifically:
    • Tachycardia and bradycardia
    • Tachypnea, bradypnea, and hyperpnea
    • Hypertension and hypotension
    • Hypothermia and hyperthermia
  • Create a differential diagnosis of drugs that cause cardiac dysrhythmias and myocardial dysfunction.
  • Create a differential diagnosis of drugs that cause agitation, coma, seizures, delirium, psychosis and ocular abnormalities.
  • Understand the evaluation of anion-gap and non-anion-gap metabolic acidoses, with specific reference to poisoned patients.
  • Learn to identify toxins by their odors and other physical characteristics.
  • Learn about less common toxins and the appropriate use of unique antidotal therapy, if available.
  • Learn the indications for extracorporeal drug removal via hemodialysis or hemoperfusion.
  • Understand the diagnosis, management and complications of withdrawal from ethanol, opioids, sedative-hypnotics, barbiturates and cocaine.
  • Develop a thorough understanding of the pathophysiology, evaluation, management and disposition of poisoned patients.

Toxicology Rotation Daily Expectations

The Toxicology rotation includes observation and participation in the daily activities of the NYC Poison Control Center as well as daily rounds with fellows and core faculty.


  • 8:50 a.m.: Orientation (first week only)
  • 9 a.m. to 11 a.m.: Poison Center Clinical Callbacks (callback process will be described later)
  • 11 a.m. to noon: Fellow Office Hours
  • Lunch Break
  • 1 p.m.: Afternoon Rounds with NYU/NYC PCC Toxicology Core Faculty


  • 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m.: Poison Center Clinical Callbacks
  • 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.: Fellow Office Hours
  • Lunch Break
  • 1 p.m.: Afternoon Rounds with Core Faculty


This schedule applies only to rotators not attending home program Wednesday Conference.

  • 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.: Independent study time (attendance at PCC is optional)
  • 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.: Poison Center Clinical Callbacks
  • 3 p.m. to 4 p.m.: Afternoon Rounds with NYU/NYC PCC Toxicology Fellow/Core Faculty


  • 9:15 a.m. to 11 a.m.: Journal Club
  • 11 a.m. to noon: Reading/Project Work
  • Lunch Break
  • 1 p.m.: Afternoon Rounds with Core Faculty


  • 9 a.m. to 11 a.m.: Poison Center Clinical Callbacks
  • 11 a.m. to noon: Fellow Office Hours/Attending Conference with Core Faculty
  • Lunch Break
  • 1 p.m.: Afternoon Rounds with Core Faculty

If there is a change in the schedule, we will email you and let you know during Callbacks/Office Hours.

Additional Schedule Notes

On the first Tuesday of every month, fellow office hours will be replaced by a conference on the mission of the NYC PCC (led by Associate Director of the NYC PCC Maria Mercurio-Zappala and Director of Education, Lauren Schwartz). Fellows will still be available for consultation to assist with callbacks.

On the first Thursday of the month, journal club is canceled, and that morning is dedicated to reading and project work. Fellows are available for consultation to assist with projects. On that day, Afternoon Rounds will be replaced with Toxicology Grand Rounds (1 p.m. to 2 p.m.) and NYC Poison Control Consultant’s Conference (2 p.m. to 4 p.m.). You will receive an email to sign up for Consultants’ Conference one to two weeks before this meeting. You must register for the Consultants’ Conference to receive the meeting information.


The program is open to graduate-level medical students (defined as having completed the equivalent of an academic year of graduate courses or more) and residents or fellows from an accredited hospital. Rotation sessions begin every Monday. There will be no incoming rotators for weeks with a Monday holiday.

How to Apply


This is a highly sought-after educational experience, so space is limited. All applications must be received at least one month in advance of the first choice rotation week.

Note: Space is limited and choosing a section does not mean you will be registered for that start date. The earlier you apply, the more likely we will be able to accommodate you. We will be in touch with you shortly after receiving your application to determine your eligibility.

For more information about the rotation, email

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