Data show continued progress in reducing elevated blood lead levels in children
More than 80 percent of New York City children are tested for lead at least once before their third birthday; more than 90 percent
of New York City children have had a blood lead test by age 6
“The City has been at the vanguard of addressing child lead poisoning concerns, which began when the Board of Health banned lead in paint in 1960 – 18 years before the federal ban,” said Health Commissioner Dr. Mary T. Bassett. “New York City continues to make tremendous progress in reducing childhood lead poisoning in children with blood lead levels at or above 5 mcg/dL for children under age 6. As we move forward, we will continue this significant progress.”
New York State law requires all children to be tested for lead at ages 1 and 2, and children up to age 6 to be tested if they are found to be at risk. New York City law also requires blood lead testing of children under age 6 who are enrolled in child care.
New York City has one of the highest testing rates in the state – more than 80 percent of New York City children are tested at least once before their third birthday. The Health Department collaborates with Medicaid Managed Care Plan to improve testing and do annual reminders to health care providers.
The Health Department, through its Healthy Homes Program, has developed a comprehensive and proactive approach to childhood lead poisoning prevention and control, which includes:
· Lead hazard reduction in homes and communities.
· Education and outreach to families and health care providers to promote prevention and early detection.
· Care coordination for children with lead poisoning and pregnant women with lead poisoning and their newborns.
· Environmental investigation and enforcement.
· Surveillance and research.