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Data & Statistics
Childhood Lead Poisoning

Childhood Lead Poisoning Data Source Information

New York City (NYC) childhood lead poisoning statistics are now available for download through the Sortable Statistics website of the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH). These data are derived from blood lead test results reported to Lead Poisoning Prevention Program (LPPP) in the Bureau of Environmental Disease Prevention. 

LPPP is responsible for tracking and monitoring lead poisoning among NYC children.  LPPP maintains a registry with more than 6.5 million reports of blood lead tests for almost 3 million NYC children. 

New York State (NYS) mandates that all children be tested for lead poisoning at age 1 year and age 2 years, and up to age 6 years when a child is found to be at risk. NYS and NYC both require laboratories to report all blood lead tests, and NYC further requires that health care providers report all elevated blood lead tests. Records of every reported lead test for children residing in the five boroughs are reported to LPPP, and the program manages all data derived from these records. Data are cleaned, stored, analyzed, disclosed and reported for public health and government purposes.

Lead poisoning is defined as a blood lead level (BLL) greater than or equal to 10 micrograms per deciliter (≥ 10 µg/dL). LPPP monitors the numbers of children tested for lead poisoning, and the numbers of children identified with BLLs ≥ 10 µg/dL.  The rate of children with lead poisoning is defined as the number of children identified with BLLs ≥ 10 µg/dL out of every 1,000 children tested for lead poisoning.

LPPP tracks blood lead testing and performs services for all NYC children younger than 18 years of age.  Young children, particularly children between the ages of 6 months and younger than 6 years, are at highest risk for lead poisoning due to age-related behaviors that expose them to lead-based paint and dust. Lead-based paint hazards are the most common sources of lead poisoning in NYC.

Data on the numbers and rates (per 1,000 children tested) of children with lead poisoning are accessible for download from DOHMH's website. Data are presented in sortable tables that can be downloaded as spreadsheets. There are two types of tables available for download, both types of tables are available for age groups of interest:

  • Number of children younger than 18 years newly identified with lead poisoning
  • Rate (per 1,000 children tested) of children younger than 18 years newly identified with lead poisoning
  • Number of children, ages 6 months to younger than 6 years, newly identified with lead poisoning
  • Rate (per 1,000 children tested) of children, ages 6 months to younger than 6 years, newly identified with lead poisoning

The tables include data given by borough and UHF neighborhood, and progress over time is reflected with the percent change in number or rate between 2001 and 2005.