Good news for Sandy City residents affected by the city’s recent water contamination issue.
Results are back from the free blood lead level screening tests provided by Intermountain Healthcare to 704 residents living in the affected areas – zones 1, 2, and 3. They show only one person tested above the 5.0μg/dL reference level at which the Centers for Disease Control recommends public health actions be initiated.
This is fewer than the Salt Lake County Health Department (SLCoHD) would statistically expect for a population this size, based on the expected prevalence of elevated blood lead levels countywide.
“The one individual who tested above the CDC action level is an adult over the age of 65 with other possible exposures to lead; their blood lead level was 5.1 μg/dL,” said Gary Edwards, SLCoHD executive director.
Based on reports from Sandy City regarding the length of time that fluoride, lead, and copper were present in the water system, health officials had said the water situation was unlikely to have long-term health impacts for potentially affected residents. SLCoHD partnered with Intermountain Healthcare for the free lead testing to provide peace of mind for residents.
“We extend our thanks to Intermountain Healthcare for providing this service to these residents,” said Edwards. “We're grateful these results confirm for those screened that any potential exposure to elevated levels of lead in this incident was indeed brief enough to not cause elevated blood lead levels.”
“We're always grateful for the opportunity to serve our community through collaboration with our public health colleagues to enhance community health,” said Mikelle Moore, senior vice president of community health for Intermountain.
Because lead is prevalent throughout the environment, SLCoHD recommends pregnant women and all children under six years of age countywide—regardless of involvement in the Sandy water incident—receive a blood lead test from their health care provider.
The most common source of lead poisoning in children is from old paint in homes built before 1978, but lead is also present in many other common products, including jewelry, tableware, charms, ammunition, fishing sinkers, stained glass, mini blinds, roofing, artificial turf, and even toys produced in countries without strict safety guidelines.
Intermountain Healthcare provided more than 700 potentially affected residents with no-cost blood lead screening