NYC reveals blood-lead levels in children
NEW YORK (FOX5NY.COM) - More than 2,000 children in NYCHA housing tested positive for elevated lead levels in their blood since 2010, according to New York City's health commissioner.
"We are treating every child who has a blood-lead level that is 5 micrograms per deciliter or higher as a child who is entitled to an environmental investigation," Dr. Mary Bassett said.
The CDC considers this level concerning. But from 2012 to 2016, the city only counted those tested at 10 micrograms per deciliter, under-reporting exposure cases while also failing to properly check apartments for lead paint and falsely reporting otherwise to federal officials.
Still, kids in NYCHA only represent 3 percent of affected children.
"The proportion of children with elevated blood-lead levels in private housing constitute the vast majority of children in our city who have elevated blood-lead levels," Bassett said.
The good news: cases of lead poisoning have gone down citywide from 17,000 in 2010 to 2,600 so far this year.
"We've seen consistent and enduring downward trend in the number of children who have elevated blood-lead levels," Bassett said.
If you have peeling paint, call 311, Bassett said. The city has the legal obligation to address it, no matter whether your landlord is public or private.