Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed two bills into law this week that will require lead testing for young children to be a part of routine doctor visits.
Previously, only children on Medicaid underwent routine lead testing, but now all 1- and 2-year-old children can be screened for lead poisoning at no cost. Test results will also be shared with health departments and documented on children’s vaccine records.
The new law, which goes into effect Jan. 1, 2024, will allow parents to opt out.
Lead poisoning can result in permanent or chronic health conditions, says Stephanie Mckendry of the Healthy Homes Coalition of West Michigan, but testing can reduce childhood exposure.
“We’re so excited to see this change happen,” she said. “It’s much needed, and I think we’ve talked a lot about in our community. We’re so reactive, right? So how can we move to be more proactive?”
Whitmer says the new law joins the state’s lead service line replacement program in trying to prevent lead poisoning.
Other headlines for Oct. 5, 2023:
- The Michigan Senate passed a bill package that would require all Michigan schools and child care centers to create safe drinking water plans and install filters at drinking water points.
- Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson announced 30 young leaders to serve on the Michigan Collegiate Student Advisory Task Force for the 2024 election cycle.
- Detroit Shipping Company is hosting its 4th annual Octobeerfest from 1 to 10 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 7.