This week, October 19-25, is National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week. According the CDC web page about lead, “Lead is a highly toxic metal that at one time was an ingredient in many household products, including lead-based paints manufactured before 1978. The primary source of lead exposure among U.S. children is the lead-based paint and lead-contaminated dust and soil found in and around old, deteriorating buildings.
Today, childhood lead poisoning is considered to be the most preventable environmental disease of young children, yet an estimated 310,000 U.S. children have elevated blood lead levels. A simple blood test can prevent a lifetime spoiled by the irreversible damage caused by lead poisoning.”
EMS Professionals have a unique position among all healthcare workers in that they see patients and their families in their homes. Just like we can play a role in fall prevention we can also play a role in lead poisoning prevention. Lead was used in paint in homes built before 1978. This paint and lead contaminated dust are top hazards for children. Lead poisoning prevention tips are available from the CDC.