If you are a volunteer, please consider getting your lead levels checked. If you are a resident, PLEASE consider getting your lead levels checked. If you have children, do not hesitate in getting their lead levels checked. If you are a volunteer, please consider donating a lead blood test to a resident in need.
Katrina stirred a lot of chemicals that have been dormant in the soil for years up to the surface.
Recommendations for Testing
CDC (102) and AAP (3) have recommended that health-care providers conduct blood lead tests on children enrolled in Medicaid and those identified as being at risk on the basis of the state or local screening plan or the risk assessment process. Federal policy requires that all children enrolled in Medicaid receive screening blood lead tests at ages 12 and 24 months and that blood lead screening be performed for children aged 36--72 months who have not been screened previously (103). Despite this, blood lead screening rates for Medicaid children have been low (<20%) href="http://www.cdc.gov/nceh/lead/grants/contacts/CLPPP%20Map.htm">http://www.cdc.gov/nceh/lead/grants/contacts/CLPPP%20Map.htm.
Targeted screening strategies enable clinicians to assess risks for individual children and recommend blood lead testing for a subset of children in the jurisdiction thought to be at increased risk for lead exposure. CDC recommends that risk evaluations be conducted on the basis of such factors as residence in a geographic area, membership in a group at high risk, answers to a personal-risk assessment questionnaire (which might include local factors such as cultural practices or products, such as herbal remedies, traditional cosmetics or imported spices), or other risk factors relevant to the jurisdiction (102).
CDC recommends that locally developed targeted risk assessment and blood lead screening strategies be applied at ages 1 and 2 years (102). Children aged 36--72 months who have been identified as being at risk and who have not been screened previously also should receive a blood lead test (102). For clinicians in areas that lack a state or local screening plan, CDC recommends that a blood lead test be performed on all children at ages 1 and 2 years and on children aged 36--72 months who have not been screened previously (102).
Because lead exposures might change with a child's developmental progress (e.g., walking or reaching window sills) or as a result of external factors (e.g., family relocation or home remodeling), two routine screenings are recommended (at approximately ages 1 and 2 years). Among children in Chicago at high risk with BLLs <10>10 µg/dL when tested again at age >2 years (103). This report does not change current CDC recommendations in ages for routine blood lead testing. However, certain local health departments (e.g., those in Chicago, Illinois; New York, New York; and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) recommend blood lead screening at younger ages or more frequently (106--108). For example, these departments recommend BLL testing starting at ages 6--9 months in high risk areas, blood lead testing at more frequent intervals (e.g., every 6 months) for children aged <2 years, or the provision of additional education and more rapid follow-up blood lead testing for children aged <12 months with BLLs 6--9 µg/dL.
Resource Guide for help and information
Consumer Product Safety Commission - recalls, etc. www.cpsc.gov
Dept of Health and Human Services - FAQs www.cdc.gov/nceh/lead
The EPA - lead in drinking water - www.epa.gov/lead