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Committee Democrats Ask States for Information on Lead Poisoning Prevention Efforts

Feb 22, 2016
Press Release
Lawmakers Request Documents from Health Departments in IL, MA, MI, NJ, NY, OH & PA

WASHINGTON, DC – Following a letter sent to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) last week on federal investments to prevent lead poisoning, Democratic leaders on the House Energy and Commerce Committee today sent letters to the Departments of Health in seven states requesting more information on the efforts to prevent lead poisoning in each state.  Letters were sent to the states that have the highest number of children with elevated blood lead levels, according to CDC’s most recent dataIllinois, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, and Pennsylvania.

Full Committee Ranking Member Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ), Health Subcommittee Ranking Member Gene Green (D-TX), Environment and the Economy Subcommittee Ranking Member Paul Tonko (D-NY), and Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee Ranking Member Diana DeGette (D-CO) sent letters to these states asking for more information on the federal funding each of the states receives to help detect elevated blood lead levels in children, and the methodologies used to collect blood lead level data reported to the CDC.  The funds, awarded to states by the CDC, are meant to assist public health authorities in identifying high risk areas and implementing interventions as needed.  The leaders asked for information on exactly how these funds are used and if additional resources are needed to combat this serious public health challenge.

Last week, the Committee leaders wrote to CDC Director Dr. Thomas Frieden requesting information on the federal agency’s Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program, which provides funding to 29 states, including all seven states that received letters from the Committee, for lead poisoning prevention and surveillance activities.