In Mississippi many children are at risk for lead poisoning but are not receiving lead screenings. In 2016 the statewide lead screening rate was only 17.9 percent of children under age 6. Healthcare service providers with patients who are under age 6 or pregnant women can support Lead Free Mississippi by talking to patients about potential lead risks in their environments, completing lead screening during exams, and ensuring lead testing results are reported to the Mississippi State Department of Health.
Join the Lead Free Mississippi Screen Birth to 6 Campaign to receive resources for your healthcare facility.
What to Know About Lead Testing
In 2012, the CDC updated its recommendations on children’s blood lead levels.
CDC now uses a blood lead reference value of 5 micrograms per deciliter to identify children with blood lead levels that are much higher than most children’s levels. This new level is based on the U.S. population of children ages 1-5 years who are in the highest 2.5% of children when tested for lead in their blood.
Children at ages 12 and 24 months should receive lead screening, especially those participating in Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnosis and Treatment programming.
Though lead can be found in many sources, lead exposure is entirely preventable. The key is stopping children from coming into contact with lead and treating children who have been poisoned by lead. Parents can take simple steps to make their homes more lead-safe.
Learn More About CDC guidelines for lead screening here