No safe blood lead level in children has been identified. A child with a blood lead level of 3.5 to less than 10 micrograms per deciliter is defined as having an elevated blood lead level. “Lead Poisoning” is defined as a confirmed level of lead in human blood of 10 micrograms per deciliter (10 µg/dl) or greater.
Lead exposure can affect nearly every system in the body. Because lead exposure often occurs with no obvious symptoms, it frequently goes unrecognized. Learn more about hiring a licensed lead inspector here.
State Law Mandates
State law mandates blood lead screening for all “high-risk” children 72 months (6 years) of age and below. A “High risk” child is defined as a child that:
- Lives in, or regularly visits, a house built before 1950. (This includes a daycare center, preschool, or home of a babysitter or relative.)
- Lives in or visits a house that has peeling, chipping, dusting, or chalking paint.
- Lives in, or visits, a house built before 1978 with recent, ongoing, or planned renovation/remodeling.
- Has a sibling or playmate who has or did have lead poisoning.
- Frequently comes in contact with an adult who has a hobby or works with lead. Examples are construction, welding, pottery, painting, and casting ammunition.
Or any child residing in one of the following zip codes:
Note: Every child on Medicaid is also mandated by the State to be tested for lead.
For an easy-to-follow handout to share with your pediatrician click here.
The Ohio Department of Health estimates that there are approximately 19,000 children with lead poisoning in the state of Ohio. Nearly half of Ohio’s children live in its six largest counties.
The Toledo-Lucas County Health Department focuses on two areas: testing all children at risk and eliminating all points of lead exposure for children (environmental intervention).
A Public Health Lead Investigation conducted by the Toledo-Lucas County Health Department includes case management, risk assessments, abatement orders, enforcement, and follow-up.