Rochester Hosts Upstate Conference on Lead Poisoning
A conference on lead poisoning will bring government, health, and education officials to Rochester this Friday.
Rochester has been recognized as a leader in reducing lead exposure in children, according to Dr. Stanley Schaffer, director of the Western New York Lead Poisoning Resource Center.
"We've made tremendous progress, but we're not completely there yet. I'm always afraid that we're going to declare victory too soon, because there are still children out there who continue to be exposed, unfortunately."
Last year, the Monroe County Health Department reported an 81 percent reduction over the past decade in the number of children reported with elevated blood lead levels.
In 2013, 197 children tested positive for lead paint poisoning in Monroe County.
Schaffer explained there is no treatment or procedure to remove lead once it’s in the brain. Lead exposure has been linked to attention and learning problems, antisocial behavior, violence, and incarceration.
Attendees of Friday’s conference will hear a report from John Paul Wright, Ph.D. of the University of Cincinnati, on a 30-year study on the connection between lead poisoning and violent crime.