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ATSDR Press Room

Public Meeting Planned to Share Results of Childhood Blood Lead and Environmental Lead Investigation in Philadelphia

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Friday, September 11, 2015

ATLANTA –Scientists from the Philadelphia Department of Public Health (PDPH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) / Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) conducted an investigation in various Philadelphia neighborhoods in July 2014. They examined blood lead levels in young children and environmental lead levels in the soil, tap water, and indoor dust in each child’s home.

The purpose of the investigation was to determine if a random selection of homes in these areas of Philadelphia have elevated lead levels; and if young children living in those homes also have elevated blood lead levels. No safe blood lead level in children has been identified, and the longer a child is exposed to lead, the more likely an adverse health-outcome can occur.

The results from this work will help public health officials find better ways of understanding how to reduce children’s exposures to lead in their homes, and inform public health and health provider outreach efforts.

The investigation area was selected because of its proximity to the long-operating former John T. Lewis/Anzon lead processing facility and the legacy of industrial operations throughout the area.

The public is invited to an information meeting on Thursday September 17, 2015 at the Urban Worship Center located at 2036 E Cumberland St, Philadelphia, PA 19125. The information meeting will start at 6:30 PM and end at 8:00 PM.

For more information about the investigation, residents can contact:

  • Ana Pomales, ATSDR Environmental Health Scientist in Region III at 215-814-5716.
  • Paulette Smith, Philadelphia Department of Public Health at 215-685-2788.

Reporters may contact the ATSDR Office of Communication at 770-488-0700 or email for additional information.


ATSDR, a federal public health agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, evaluates the potential for adverse human health effects of exposure to hazardous substances.

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