HARRISBURG, Pa., July 22, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Department of Health Secretary Dr. Karen Murphy announced today that the Pennsylvania Department of Health will be awarded $2.5 million in Lead-Based Paint Hazard Control grant funds and $400,000 in Healthy Homes Supplemental funding by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
"HUD supports Pennsylvania's ongoing efforts to reduce health risks such as lead poisoning in the commonwealth," said Secretary Murphy. "With Governor Wolf's leadership, the Department of Health is committed to addressing the problem of lead in Pennsylvania, and this grant will play a major role in this mission moving forward."
The Lead-Based Paint Hazard Control grant funding will be used to reduce the number of children with elevated blood lead levels and protect families from hazards in their homes. The department will use this grant to assist low-income residents with children under 6 years old, by providing lead inspections and abatement of lead hazards in their homes.
With the grant funds, the department anticipates providing inspections in 279 homes and abating lead hazards in 186 homes. Eliminating dangerous lead paint hazards from homes reduces the risk of children being exposed to lead.
The Healthy Homes Supplemental funding will be used to address other hazards such as asthma triggers, radon, trip-fall hazards, and pests.
Pennsylvania ranks fifth in the nation for the number of homes built before 1950, when lead-based paint was commonly used. In many urban and some rural areas, the risk of lead exposure is compounded by high numbers of families living in poverty.
The department identified areas that are particularly vulnerable based on the number and percentage of children with elevated blood lead levels, homes built before 1940, and household incomes below the poverty level.
To achieve the grant goals, the department will partner with the Allegheny County Health Department, the Allentown Health Bureau, the Bethlehem Health Bureau, the Chester County Health Department, the City of Johnstown, the Montgomery County Health Department, the National Nurse-Led Care Consortium, the Philadelphia Department of Public Health, the Wilkes-Barre Health Bureau and the York Health Bureau.
For more information on Pennsylvania's efforts to reduce lead-related health complications, please visit www.health.pa.gov.
MEDIA CONTACT: Penny Ickes, 717-787-1783
SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Health