For decades, removing lead (Pb) from the environment has been a public health priority because residual contamination from decades of using products containing harmful lead continued to cause health problems. Fortunately, the public health interventions (removing Pb from gas, paint, and cans) worked and today 99.9% of Arizona kids have blood lead levels below the standard. As a result, the CDC has been phasing out childhood lead poisoning prevention programs and replacing them with a new initiative called Healthy Homes.
We found out last week that our Office of Environmental Health will begin developing a Healthy Homes Program for of Arizona. This fall, our new Arizona Healthy Homes Program will build and enhance relationships with housing and environmental health programs throughout the state to reduce housing related health concerns, such as childhood lead poisoning, asthma, allergies and unintended injuries, by increasing the number of healthy homes for our most vulnerable and underserved communities. The first year will be spent working with partners to perform a needs assessment to determine which housing related health hazards pose the greatest risk to Arizonans. Stay Tuned.