More Children at Risk of Lead Poisoning

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently lowered the limits for lead poisoning in children, which means that more numbers of children in the country are now considered at risk for lead poisoning.

Last week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lowered the limit for lead poisoning to 5 mcg of lead per deciliter of blood. The earlier limit was 10 mcg of lead per deciliter of blood. Under the earlier standards, approximately 250,000 children were believed to be at risk of lead poisoning. However, under the new standards, it is believed that as many as 450,000 children in the country could be at risk of lead poisoning.

Any Los Angeles personal injury lawyer would welcome the new lowered standards for lead poisoning because it means that children who have even 5 mcg of lead per deciliter of their blood will be considered at risk of lead poisoning. These children can be monitored for their lead levels, and can be appropriately treated.

However, just because the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has strengthened the lead poisoning standards, does not mean that the agency can now invest more resources in awareness, education, monitoring and tracking programs. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently had its funding for lead poisoning prevention slashed by 90%.

In 2011, the agency enjoyed $29 million in funding for lead poisoning prevention programs, and that funding was slashed to $2 million this year. The Lead Poisoning Prevention Program of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is now going to be vastly understaffed. The program earlier had 26 employees, and the agency plans to cut down the workforce to just 6 employees.

That means that the agency is simply not going to have the kind of resources necessary to implement lead poisoning prevention programs.