Exposure to lead and length of time needed to make homes lead-safe for young children

Academic Article


  • Objectives. We determined the length of time needed to make homes lead-safe in a population of children aged 0 to 6 years with blood lead levels (BLLs) of 20 micrograms per deciliter (μg/dL) or greater. Reducing this time would reduce children's exposure to lead. Methods. Data came from the Wisconsin Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program's comprehensive blood lead surveillance system. Analysis was restricted to children whose first BLL test value during 1996-1999 was between 20 and 40 μg/ dL and for whom housing intervention data were available (n = 382). Results. The median length of time required to make a home lead-safe was 465 days. Only 18% of children lived in homes that were made lead-safe within 6 months; 45% lived in homes requiring more than 18 months to be lead-safe. Conclusions. Efforts are needed to reduce the time it takes to make a home lead-safe. Although abatement orders always include time limits, improved compliance with the orders must be enforced. Greater emphasis should be placed on securing lead-safe or lead-free housing for families, thus reducing lead exposure.
  • Published In

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Zierold KM; Havlena J; Anderson H
  • Start Page

  • 267
  • End Page

  • 270
  • Volume

  • 97
  • Issue

  • 2