City of St. Louis Department of Health partners with Saint Louis Public Schools to host Lead Screening Clinics

The City of St. Louis addresses childhood lead poisoning through screenings, surveillance and case management through its Lead Safe St. Louis Program.

December 15, 2021 | 2 min reading time

The City of St. Louis Department of Health (DOH), in partnership with Saint Louis Public Schools, will expand its efforts against childhood lead poisoning by providing screening services to eligible SLPS students. The City of St. Louis remains committed to addressing the serious issue of childhood lead poisoning, with DOH routinely performing lead screening, lead surveillance and case management for children under six years old and eligible refugee children through its Lead Safe St. Louis Program. Despite declining trends in childhood cases of elevated blood lead levels, the City of St. Louis continues to see child lead poisoning rates that exceed state and national averages, with Black children disproportionately affected relative to White children. 

“Exposure to lead can have a wide range of effects on a child's development and behavior,” states Dr. Mati Hlatshwayo Davis, Director of Health for the City of St. Louis. “Our nursing staff will work to ensure young students are appropriately screened and promptly connected to medical case management to avoid the long term harmful impacts of lead. This effort will advance more equitable health outcomes for our children and we are excited to begin this new initiative.”

DOH Staff at Patrick Henry Elementary SchoolThe first lead screening clinic is scheduled for Patrick Henry Elementary on December 15th. Additional clinics will be scheduled at SLPS to offer screening to all eligible students, with parental consent.  A designated SLPS Nurse and the Lead Safe St. Louis Nurse Case Manager will coordinate dissemination and completion of parent or caregiver consent packets before scheduled clinic days. The entire screening process takes about 15 minutes or less for each child. 

“The main goal of this partnership is to support new and returning Pre-K students by providing annual testing of lead levels, as mandated by the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services,” says SLPS Superintendent Dr. Kelvin R. Adams. “These collaborative efforts will help ensure that our students will thrive and reach their full academic potential. We look forward to another successful collaboration with the Department of Health”. 

The DOH also works closely with the City of St. Louis Building Division to refer addresses of potential exposure for inspection and lead remediation. As the city’s lead program has evolved from its inception in 2003, there have been several improvements in the coordination and communication efforts among departments involved in remediating lead hazards and monitoring children impacted by lead poisoning to ensure proper care.

DOH continues to offer lead screening services at 1520 Market St., Suite 4051. Appointments are preferred and can be made by calling (314) 657-1515. If you would like to learn more about the Lead Safe St. Louis Program, please feel free to reach out to Nurse Yvonne Franklin at the same number or via email at frankliny@stlouis-mo.gov. We encourage parents and caregivers to learn more about childhood lead poisoning prevention by viewing the following video.

  • Contact Information:
    Kim Vanden Berg
    Public Information Officer
    Office Phone: (314) 657-1483
    Mobile Phone: (314) 659-7742
  • Department:
    Department of Health
  • Topic:

Video

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