Our research on pediatric blood lead prevention is a collaborative effort between the Texas Department of State and Human Services’ (DSHS) Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program (TX CLPPP), the Department of Population Health at Dell Medical School, and the Moody College of Communication at the University of Texas at Austin. The goal of this research is to facilitate health promotion efforts to increase blood lead awareness and screening behaviors among children and better understand the barriers to increasing awareness and screening behaviors.
In this project, we are integrating environmental and demographic information to identify high-risk geographic areas and develop strategies to monitor the percent of elevated blood lead levels in these regions over time. The data should inform the implementation of future health promotion efforts, leading to the development of new partnerships with local organizations to create and implement interventions targeted at the high-risk geographic areas and populations our research identifies. Additionally, our data analysis will assess the effectiveness of health promotion efforts that are implemented as part of our partnership with TX CLPPP.
Going beyond just data analysis, our team also develops evidence-based educational materials for parents, providers, and the general public to increase awareness of sources and potential health impacts of blood lead poisoning among children. The goal is to increase awareness of pediatric blood lead poisoning risks, highlight the importance of prevention and screening, and teach parents tips and skills so they feel more comfortable talking with their medical providers about lead poisoning. We also develop provider-centric materials that aim to educate doctors on the importance of blood lead testing, key risk factors, and best practices related to children with elevated blood lead levels. Our team also develops partnerships with local organizations to coordinate opportunities for community outreach and opportunities to share these educational materials among high-risk populations.