The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) and the Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program (CLPPP) are looking for physician input to guide strategies for decreasing lead poisoning in children, especially in our most vulnerable communities.
Many of us know that lead is a powerful neurotoxicant and elevated blood lead levels (EBLLs) can result in damage to the brain and nervous system as well as developmental delays in children. Eliminating EBLLs among children is one of the U.S. national health objectives.
The CDC Advisory Committee on Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention is updating recommendations for improving blood lead screening and information for health-care providers, state officials, and others interested in lead-related services. Because state and local officials are more familiar than federal agencies with local risk for EBLLs, CDC recommends that these officials have the flexibility to develop blood lead screening strategies that reflect local risk for EBLLs. Rather than provide universal screening to all children. State and local officials should target screening toward specific groups of children in their area at higher risk for EBLLs.
As part of our work with Michigan’s Child Lead Poisoning Prevention Program, we are working to launch a statewide survey for Michigan’s medical providers. The goal of this survey is to establish a baseline of current blood lead risk screening procedures and to define the following:
- What percentage of medical providers are currently universally screening for blood lead exposure?
- What percentage of medical providers are using targeted screening for blood lead risk?
- What criteria are being used to target high risk populations (ZIP code characteristics, proximity of residence to factory where lead is used, age of residence, etc.)
- Are physicians familiar with and regularly using the Michigan recommendations for screening and testing at-risk children?
- What barriers may be prohibiting medical providers from instituting more targeted screening efforts (technological, or otherwise)?
MDHHS’s Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program is interested in assessing the barriers to blood lead risk screening, blood lead level testing, and blood lead level test result submissions to the Child Lead Poisoning Program’s Surveillance System with the ultimate goal of increasing screening and testing state-wide for at risk populations. We are asking for wide spread participation through a multitude of methods. All information captured will be kept private and will not be shared outside our organization (Altarum) or the State of Michigan DHHS (Child Lead Poisoning Prevention Program). Survey responses may be anonymously submitted, many questions are optional, and survey time is estimated between 1-2 minutes.
Survey responses will be captured electronically through a web form HERE.