Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention

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Table of Contents

Program Description

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The Solano County Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program (CLPPP) is a state funded, county administered program established for the prevention, education, screening, diagnosis, and case management of lead poisoning in children and young adults. The program staff members are composed of a public health nurse, senior health educator, senior registered environmental health specialist (REHS), and senior hazardous materials specialist. Through this coordinated effort, the program provides case management, environmental surveillance, home visiting, education, and outreach for the residents of Solano County.


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Solano County children and young adults from birth up to 21 years old with an elevated lead level test result ≥ 3.5 micrograms per deciliter (mcg/dL).

Information for Providers

The CLPPP Coordinator provides coordination between the medical provider and the local public health team.  This is essential for effective follow-up of lead exposed children and young adults.  If a patient has a blood lead level result ≥ 3.5 micrograms per deciliter (mcg/dL), contact the CLPPP Coordinator with patient information to expediate services to the child and their family at 707-469-4596 or 707-784-8070 or fax lab reports to 707-421-7484. Test results are also received from the state Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Branch.    

Provider Guidelines

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Did You Know?

California is making efforts to keep our drinking water lead-free.  According to the Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Branch (CLPPB), in California, most tap water from public water systems used for drinking is not contaminated with lead. Water service lines are the pipes and fittings that bring drinking water from the water main to the house’s water meter.  Water utilities are not responsible for changing privately owned service lines or private wells. This water should be tested for lead when used for drinking water.  For more information about testing your water supply visit the Environmental Protection Agency at: or call 800-426-4791.

To learn more about water service line replacements, visit the Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Branch.

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Information for Families

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What is lead?

Lead is a toxic metal that can harm the brain, kidneys, and other organs, especially in children.  Even a small amount of lead in a child’s body can cause learning difficulties and developmental delays. Lead exposure in a pregnant woman can result in premature birth or an infant with a low birth weight. If a pregnant woman’s blood lead level is very high, there is an increased risk of miscarriage. Lead can also be transferred to the unborn baby through the placenta. Breastfeeding women can pass lead to their newborn through breast milk.

different types of paint

Lead in Paint

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Why is lead in paint?

Prior to 1978 homes were painted with lead-based paint. Lead was added to house paint to intensify the color, accelerate drying time, increase durability and moisture resistance.  Children’s toy makers began to use lead paint for durability of the colors and finish.

How does lead get from the paint into my child?

Lead poisoning can occur when lead enters the body. This can be small amounts consumed over time that can cause health problems. Lead-based paint chips and dust are still one of the most common sources of lead poisoning in children.

 Lead gets into your body and into your child’s body by:

  • eating or breathing dust that is contaminated by lead, including lead from paint
  • surfaces such as windowsills painted with leaded paint or eating lead paint chips
  • placing items in your mouth that are contaminated with lead (some toys, jewelry, keys, etc.)
  • eating soil contaminated by lead from paint
  • eating lead contaminated fruits and vegetables that were not thoroughly washed
  • drinking tap water that has lead in it (some homes may have leaded pipes or fixtures that may leach into the water)

What should I do if my home has been painted with lead-based paint?

There are many dangers when removing lead paint from your home. To prevent injury consult a certified lead professional before beginning renovations.  Information about lead safe work practices and lead certifications may be found in the links below.

Follow the link below for the English brochure - Repainting or Fixing Up Your Older Home?

Follow the link below for the Spanish brochure – ¿Va a pintar o a hacer arreglos en una casa vieja?

For additional information about lead-safe work practices, visit the United States Environmental Protection Agency website at:  

hands holding soil and a plant

Lead in Soil

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Why is lead found in soil?

Almost all the lead in the soil comes from lead paint chips from homes (built before 1978), factory pollution, and the use of leaded gasoline before it was discontinued.   Lead levels in soil are usually higher in cities, alongside roadways, near industries that use lead, and next to older homes where crumbling lead paint has fallen into the soil.

How does lead enter our body?

Lead gets into your body by

  • eating soil contaminated by lead from paint, from former leaded gasoline emissions or from industrial air pollution
  • eating lead contaminated fruits and vegetables that were not thoroughly washed or that absorbed lead from the soil
  • exposure to polluted air from aviation gasoline in neighborhoods and small airports  

Can I protect my child from lead in soil?

For information on how to Protect Your Family from Lead Sources, visit:

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Lead in Home Remedies and Spices

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Home remedies, spices, and traditional medicines used around the world are thought to help a variety of health problems.  However, some of these home remedies and spices may contain lead which can be dangerous especially for children, pregnant women, and other adults. 

What can I do if I have taken or have given my child a home remedy that has lead?

Call your doctor to request a blood lead test. Medical information is confidential. You can also call the California Poison Control System at 1-800-222-1222 or visit their website at They are available 24 hours/day, 7 days/week, and 365 days a year to answer your questions and help in an emergency. Language interpreters are available. 

ceramic jars

Lead in Imported Ceramics

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What should I look for?

Lead may be in the paint or glaze of a ceramic dish. Signs that lead may be present are:

 1.       Painted colorful ceramics

 2.        White ceramic glaze  

3.        Old/antiqued ceramic dishes that are deteriorated, worn, cracked and chipped

 What can I do to identify lead in traditional ceramic dishware?

The only way to identify lead in your ceramic dishware has lead is to purchase a lead test kit. Many hardware stores sell lead test kits which can be used for home testing.

Do not use any ceramic dishes that you know are contaminated with lead.

Follow the link below for the English brochure – Lead in Traditional Ceramic Dishware

Follow the link below for the Spanish brochure – El Plomo en las Vajillas de Barro

What can I do to prevent lead poisoning?

Many hardware stores and some pharmacies sell lead-testing kits, but these kits will not tell you how much lead is in the dish, only that it has lead. 

Do not use any ceramic dishes that you know have lead on the inside or outside.

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Testing your Child for Lead Poisoning

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How do I know if my child is lead poisoned?

Lead poisoning can affect anyone, but children younger than 6 years old are at higher risk.  Most children who have lead poisoning do not look or act sick. The only way to find out if your child has lead poisoning is to ask your doctor to order a blood test for lead. 

When should my child get tested for lead poisoning?

At risk children should be tested at 1 and 2 years old for lead poisoning. Children should be tested if they are between the ages of 1 and 6 years and have not been tested for lead previously.  If there is a concern about lead poisoning, a blood lead test can be requested at any age.

Can my child get a free blood test for lead poisoning?

If your child has Medi-Cal, the blood test for lead is free. Other health insurance plans also may pay for this blood test.

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Food Tips to help Protect your child from Lead Poisoning - Ages 1 to 6 Years Old

Healthy meals and snacks can help protect your child from lead poisoning.  A diet low in calcium and iron may allow the child to absorb more lead into their system increasing the risk of lead poisoning.   

Follow the link below for the English and Spanish brochure  – Well Fed = Less Lead/Comiendo Saludable = Menos Plomo

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Don't Take Lead Home from your Job

How can I protect myself and my family from lead poisoning at work?

Follow the link below for the English brochure – Don’t take lead home from your job!

Follow the link below for the Spanish brochure – ¡No lleve el plomo a su casa!

For information on lead in the workplace  contact the California Department of Public Health, Occupational Lead Poisoning Prevention Branch at 1-510-620-5757 or visit: 

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Simple Ways to Protect your Child from Lead Poisoning

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Click link below for the English and Spanish brochure – Protect your child from Lead/Proteja a su hijo contra el Plomo


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Contact Information

For more information, contact Solano County Health & Social Services Department, Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program, 1119 E. Monte Vista Avenue, MS 32-220, Vacaville, CA 95688 (707)469-4596 or (707)784-8070