Community Blood Lead Levels Results
The first quarter blood lead levels results (BLL) from SA Health show that the Blood Lead Level (BLL) of Port Pirie children under 5 years of age is unchanged from quarter 4 2017 with a geomean of 4.6 µg/dL.
The BLL has been relatively stable for the past 12 months. While the geomean BLL is unchanged there has been a deterioration in the percentage of children under the NHMR intervention guideline of 10 µg/dL. The 75.2% <10 µg/dL is the lowest number since 2015. While it is disappointing that the improvement trajectory of the last 10 years has reached a plateau it is pleasing that it has not deteriorated in line with the relatively poor emission performance and high lead in air outcomes we have been experiencing at the Port Pirie High Volume samplers.
With work completed in the recent Nyrstar shut and their focus on improved housekeeping the expectation moving forward is for much better emission performance.
On a positive note one statistic that was reported in SA Health’s 2017 Annual report is the fact that the BLL average of pregnant women in Port Pirie was 1.2 ug/dL. It’s critical that pregnant women’s BLL’s remain as low as possible as a child will be born with its mothers BLL. This is an excellent outcome for the Port Pirie community.