Lead Screening in Pennsylvania

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Why This Indicator Matters

One way to ensure that our children thrive is to limit their exposure to toxins like lead. Research shows that there is no safe level of lead exposure – even the smallest amount can damage a child’s ability to learn. Young children are most at-risk of lead toxicity because of normal hand-to-mouth activities and because they more efficiently absorb lead than adults. This is why it is so important to ensure children are tested at a young age and referred as early as possible when they are exposed.
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Definitions: These indicators reflect the percent of children two years old who had one or more capillary or venous lead blood tests for lead poisoning prior to their second birthday. Universal screening is indicated according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) criteria and based on the higher prevalence of both elevated blood levels in Pennsylvania children and pre-1950 housing found in the Commonwealth (PA Department of Health, 2011 PA Child Lead Poisoning Elimination Plan).

The year represents when PPC published the report.

Data Source: PPC's report, along with source documentation, can be found at http://www.papartnerships.org/work/health/childrens-health-reports.

Footnotes: This indicator was derived from a hybrid sampling methodology but the weighted average was computed to reflect the population of all children receiving public health care.

Updated November 2019.