Testing - What to Expect
WHERE CAN I TEST MY CHILDREN'S BLOOD LEAD LEVELS?
We recommend contacting your child’s pediatrician or health care provider who can order the testing for your child’s blood lead level. For more information:
- Visit the Washington Department of Health's Testing for Lead Poisoning website.
- Call the Washington Lead Information Hotline at 1-800-909-989
HOW IS THE TESTING DONE FOR LEAD POISONING?
WHAT DO THE BLOOD LEAD TEST RESULTS MEAN?
WHAT IF MY CHILD HAS LEAD POISONING?
Public health intervention
If your child has received a blood lead test and the results are at or exceed the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention "reference level" (3.5 micrograms per deciliter), your family is eligible to have a free phone consultation from a Snohomish County Health Department public health nurse to help identify potential sources of lead that may be contributing to your child's lead level.
A phone call with a public health nurse who will ask a set of questions focusing on known lead risk factors. These questions are designed to help narrow down the list of potential sources of lead that may be contributing to your child’s lead level. After potential sources of lead have been identified, a more in-depth look at those sources can take place. Health education will be done on the risks of lead exposure, how to decrease exposure, and prevention measures. Health education materials on lead risk and prevention will be mailed to you.
If, after the phone call with the public health nurse, it is determined that a site investigation is needed, the site investigation will be scheduled with the Public Health Nurse, Environmental Health specialist, or both. To further examine potential sources of lead in your home, a thorough walk-through will be done. The walk-through occurs inside and outside the home. Key items that will be looked at are often determined by the phone investigation but could include paint condition, surfaces, dishes, cookware, spices, and toys.
Optional: Samples may be collected to further identify or confirm suspected sources of lead present in the home. Types of samples that may be collected include paint chips, dust wipes, soil, and/or water. Any samples that are obtained will be submitted to a laboratory for analysis at no cost to the family.
Health Department staff will communicate the results with you and any actions that should be taken.
The Public Health Nurse will follow-up with you and your child's healthcare provider until your child’s blood lead level decreases to below 3.5 µg/dL.