New 2023 Indiana Law Requires Healthcare Providers to Offer New Blood Test for Children Under 6
A new year means a few new laws will go into effect in the state of Indiana. One of which applies only to healthcare providers, but can have an impact on the life of your child.
House Enrolled Act 1313 Goes Into Effect on January 1st, 2023
Authored by State Representative Brad Barret, House Enrolled Act 1313 was passed unanimously by the State House on January 25th, 2022, and by the State Senate nearly one month later on February 29th. The new law requires healthcare providers to offer parents the option of having their young child tested for lead exposure in their blood if they are under the age of six and do not have a record of being previously tested.
According to the Indiana Department of Health (IDH), prior to the law going into effect, "only Indiana children covered by Medicaid were required to be tested for lead at ages 12 and 24 months."
It's important to note, the Bill does not say parents must have the testing done, only that their child's healthcare provider offers it.
Dangers of Lead Exposure
The IDH says exposure to lead can "damage the brain and nervous system, causing slowed growth and development, learning and behavior problems, issues with hearing and speech, impulsivity, nausea, and other debilitating effects." While it is more toxic to unborn and younger children, it can create issues in adults as well.
The Department goes on to say the primary source of lead poisoning in the state comes from chipping or peeling lead-based paint that mixes with the dust in the air. However, lead can also be found in contaminated soil, drinking water, and occasionally in children's toys and jewelry.
Visit the Indiana Department of Health website for more information on how you can protect your child from exposure to lead along with where you can get them tested.
[Source: Indiana Department of Health]