Allegheny County could be first in Pa. to require lead testing for kids

Written by The Associated Press | May 4, 2017 10:01 AM

John Slagle, an operator at the Hanover water department, prepares a water sample for testing on Thursday, Jan. 12, 2017. The department tests water samples from six sites in the Hanover area twice each month. Dan Rainville, The Evening Sun

(Pittsburgh) -- Pennsylvania's second-largest county could become the first in the state to require all children to be tested for high lead levels in their blood.

The Allegheny County Board of Health has unanimously recommended the proposal -- which would require two tests, around ages one and two.

The regulation must be approved by the county council and county executive. It would take effect in January.

Allegheny County Health Department director Karen Hacker says she believes testing is necessary because most homes in the county were built before lead was banned in paint.

She says universal lead testing in high-risk areas is recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics and is already required in 11 states and Washington, D.C.

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