Connecticut Still Struggles with Lead Poisoning


When it comes to lead exposure, Connecticut is facing the same problem many states around the Child-Blowing-Bubbles.jpgcountry are dealing with: undertesting. In 2013, 60,000 Connecticut children under age 6 were exposed to lead, and 2,275 were considered poisoned, according to numbers from the Connecticut Department of Public Health. However, some experts suspect the numbers of lead exposure and lead poisoning are higher than reported because of the low testing rates. Connecticut state law requires every child to be tested twice, once per year, before age 3, but only 50% of children receive the mandated tests.

This problem is not unique to Connecticut. There are a variety of reasons a child might not receive the appropriate testing such as lack of consistency in healthcare providers. Additionally, lead is still regarded as an urban rather than suburban or rural issue. And, federal law is not as strict as Connecticut law, causing some people to take the mandated screening less seriously than they should.

The CDC states that there is no safe level of lead for children. Studies have shown that the negative effects of lead, which include loss of IQ, increased behavioral issues and difficulty in school, can occur at lower levels of lead exposure than the 5 μg/dL. It is critical that lead exposure is identified early. This allows the source of lead to be investigated and addressed before causing further problems. 

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