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  QUESTION: Helping to spread great US lead policies to the rest of the globe, 25 Oct 2005, California USA

I am a PHN in CA.

Your PPP by Dr. Balzar is excellent.

Currently we are funded and have a grant for lead abatement from HUD (federal government).

Thank you for an excellent web site. If I can help in any way please let me know.

I have on 2 occasions visited Australia while my son lived there and enjoyed the experience very much. Best of luck

Erma Coty MSN RN PHN

EMAIL TWO Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Dear Elizabeth,

Yes I certainly can write letters and I will bring this communication to the state meeting this Friday (Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Branch) and encourage a support position. I believe that many of our policies are woefully weak and are focused only on lower income children while all of our children continue to be at risk. The AAP document (thank you for the update) is a definite improvement.

In Santa Cruz County I have included all children whose BLL is 5mcg/dcl in my new grant. The will receive Phone interview and mailed educational material. If the child is a young toddler or we isolate a specific problem that needs further attention we can do a home visit and may bring an env. health spec. along. We are also following all pregnant women who have a measurable BLL. We also refer the infants of these moms (and any children, 3 and under, with EBL's to Lucille Packard Children's for developmental follow-up based on toxic in utero exposure. There are 2 of us in the CLPP program, neither full time and we are embedded in env health and the HUD grant for lead abatement.

We are encouraging all OB-Gyns to test all pregnant women and are doing trainings to all ped/general practice docs in capillary testing of children aged 12 mos to 21 y/o. Our CHDP (child health/welfare) program includes all minors. So I teach the offices to do annual lead levels. We have many cultural exposure issues due to large population of migrants from Oaxaca Mexico and because we have many who turn to ayurvedic medicine as an alternative to western medicine.

Santa Cruz County has about 70% of homes that are pre 1978 and have potential lead problems. We are a coastal community in which the "beach homes" are now permanent residences. and very expensive at that. So there is no economic advantage here. Home ownership is difficult for most people in this county.

I am not surprised that the US takes no leadership role in world environmental issues. But politics are for another day.

My son (who lived and worked in Australia) is working for a company whose soy products are competing with JASCO, etc in order to meet clean air standards. He shared a site with me that has a lot of info on current legal battles regarding lead in paint. www.afhh.org

The Western Center on Law and Poverty is also a good resource.

We are currently observing "lead Week" and doing extra activities to raise awareness.

Go easy
Erma Coty

ANSWER: 25 Oct 2005

Dear Erma,

Thankyou very much for your email - you are very kind. You mentioned that if you can help in any way, I should let you know. Perhaps you can give me some insight or write some letters - I would very much appreciate knowing how we can spread your wonderful US lead policies to the rest of the globe. High on my priority list are the 81 countries where leaded gasoline is still sold. Then there are all the places where lead in paint and other products is not regulated at all, lead acid batteries and electronic waste from the developed world are recycled with tragic consequences and awareness of lead poisoning is zilch.

The recent precautionary approach taken by the American Academy of Paediatrics (see Rachel's Environment & Health News #827 - Pediatricians Urge a Precautionary Approach to Toxic Lead, By Peter Montague, September 29, 2005 and Lead Exposure in Children: Prevention, Detection, and Management. By AMERICAN ACADEMY OF PEDIATRICS: Screening for Elevated Blood Lead Levels, Committee on Environmental Health. Pediatrics Vol. 116 No. 4 pp. 1036 -1046 at ) ought to be impacting today on children in every home on the planet.

Yet I hear that a 37-member US delegation to Geneva recently told 600 delegates from other countries that the precautionary principal was not appropriate for health policy and therefore must be kept out of the Strategic Approach to International Chemicals Management.

Anything you can do would be much appreciated. 

Yours Sincerely

Elizabeth O'Brien

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