National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

18 October, 2010

The health district will offer free blood lead screenings between 10 a.m. – noon and 1 p.m. – 2 p.m., Monday, Oct. 18 at the WIC Henderson clinic, 215 Palo Verde Ave., and between 10 a.m. – noon and 1 p.m. – 2 p.m., Tuesday, Oct. 19 at the WIC Owens clinic, 1501 Las Vegas Blvd, North. The health district will also offer free, walk-in blood lead screenings for children between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 28 at its 625 Shadow Lane public health center. For information, contact the health district’s Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program (CLPPP), (702) 759-1283 or visit www.SNHD.info.

The Southern Nevada Health District and UNLV’s School of Public Health are working together as part of the Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program, which tracks, investigates and provides support for children exposed to lead. By educating parents and health care providers about the dangers of lead and how to avoid exposure, the program can help prevent childhood lead poisoning.

The health district offers blood lead screening through its Healthy Kids clinic each Wednesday between 1:30 p.m. and 4 p.m. at its 625 Shadow Lane location. The clinic screens children between the ages of 12 months and six years old, the cost is $20. Screening can also be done by a child’s physician. It is recommended that children be tested for lead exposure at 12 months and again at 24 months of age, or once between the ages of three and six if he has not been tested previously.

As part of the CLPPP, the health district provides environmental investigations and case management services when a child is found to have elevated blood lead levels. The inspection is conducted to identify the source of the lead exposure and includes an examination of traditional sources (such as paint, tiles) and non-traditional sources (imported candies, toys, jewelry, and crockery). Case management is also provided, which coordinates services between the family and the healthcare provider.

Lead is a metallic element that can be absorbed by the body and is listed as a known carcinogen by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Toxic Release Inventory. Lead poisoning is the result of an accumulation of lead in the blood, bone and other tissues after exposure to contaminated materials including lead-based paint, soil, household dust, pottery and cookware. Children absorb lead more easily than adults, making them particularly susceptible to the adverse affects of lead. In children six and younger, lead poisoning can cause learning disabilities and behavioral problems and, at very high levels, seizures, coma and even death.

Updated information about the Southern Nevada Health District can be found on Facebook www.facebook.com/SouthernNevadaHealthDistrict, on YouTube www.youtube.com/SNHealthDistrict or Twitter www.twitter.com/SNHDinfo.

Visit the Media Contacts webpage for media related inquiries.

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Access information about the Southern Nevada Health District on its website: www.SNHD.info. Follow the Health District on Facebook: www.facebook.com/SouthernNevadaHealthDistrict, YouTube: www.youtube.com/SNHealthDistrict, Twitter: www.twitter.com/SNHDinfo, and Instagram: www.instagram.com/southernnevadahealthdistrict/. The Health District is available in Spanish on Twitter: www.twitter.com/TuSNHD.  Additional information and data can be accessed through the Healthy Southern Nevada website: www.HealthySouthernNevada.org.