The Edgar County Lead Prevention program is a much needed program that offers lead education, testing and follow up case management including home visits, nutrition education and counseling for elevated results.
Edgar County is listed on the High-Risk ZIP Code for Pediatric Blood Lead Poisoning, thus IDPH states that any child residing in Edgar County is required to have Blood Lead Testing completed routinely at age 6 month through 6 years of age. CDC recommends that children have blood lead test at age 1 & 2 years of age as this is the time in a young child”s life that they are crawling on the floor and putting everything in their mouth.
This is such an important and easy test without it children may go untreated and suffer lifelong impairment do to elevated lead levels. Unfortunately children will not show signs or symptoms of elevated lead levels until it is too late, child often will not show any symptoms at all. Lead poisoning is the reason for a number of serious health problems; learning disabilities, mental retardation, behavioral problems, lowered IQ”s, slowed growth and hearing impairment are of the milder long term health issues. Children who live with an elevated lead could slip into a coma and death can occur at higher lead levels. All of this can be prevented by a simple finger stick or blood draw, here at the health department we offer lead testing two days a month and many tests are also completed in conduction with WIC appointments too.
In 2014 we tested 60 children ranging from age 12months to 5 years of age of age. Currently in Edgar County we have 9 cases of Elevated Lead Poisoning that are being followed and treated by myself. Without completing this very easy test these children would have continued to be exposed and had even greater Blood Lead values resulting in even greater long term health issues.
We have much work to do though as the 2012 IDPH Illinois Lead Program Annual Surveillance Report shows that Edgar County had only 273 children tested for lead out of 8,810 housing units. Of those 273 children tested 4.4% Medicaid eligible children tested >10mg/dL, 13.7 %tested >5mg/dL, 6.6 % of non-Medicaid children test >5mg/dL.
This is such a preventable disease with proper education, in 2015 we will be working with local physician”s offices to increase the number of children tested in Edgar County and to help increase the knowledge of Lead Poisoning among Edgar County Residents and why it is so important to get children tested. For more information on lead poisoning, renovations or disposal of lead paint click here
To schedule a appointment or have questions call:
Cost is $35. or if you have a medical card there is no charge to you.