International Lead Poisoning Prevention Week (ILPPW) is an initiative of the Lead Paint Alliance (which is jointly led by the UN Environment Programme and WHO) to raise awareness and promote actions to address the health impacts of lead exposure, especially on children, pregnant women, and workers. The International Lead Poisoning Prevention Week is being celebrated from 24 - 30 October 2021
Lead is a cumulative toxicant (increasing in quantity in the body over many years) that affects multiple body systems (neurologic, hematologic, gastrointestinal, cardiovascular, and renal systems).
Young children are more susceptible to toxic effects of lead because they have higher exposure than adults and because of their developing brain resulting in reduced intellectual ability.
The theme for ILPPW 2021 is “Working together for a world without lead paint”.
The day will raise awareness about the effects of lead exposure on health, the efforts put forth by countries to prevent lead exposure and emphasizes on the need to eliminate lead paint by regulatory actions.
Global Alliance to Eliminate Lead Paint is promoting a phase-out of lead paint at the global level by establishing legally binding measures to stop the manufacture, import, export, distribution, sale and use of lead paints in each country.
It was estimated by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation that lead exposure was responsible for 0.90 million deaths in 2019 with the highest burden on the developing countries.
As per UNICEF report 2020, there are around 800 million children (1 in 3 children) globally have blood lead levels at or above 5 micrograms per deciliter (µg/dL ), the level which requires intervention. India accounts for 275,561,163 such cases.
Many countries have taken actions to prevent the harmful health impacts of lead exposure. The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MOEFCC), Government of India has also passed a notification as “Regulation on Lead contents in Household and Decorative Paints Rules, 2016” in November 2016. That came in force in November 2017. It prohibits the manufacture, trade, import as well as export of household and decorative paints containing lead or lead compounds above 90 parts per million (ppm).
There is no level of exposure to lead that is known to be without harmful effects. Lead exposure is preventable.
Four things you should know about lead (WHO)-See Video
Know more about Lead poisoning-NHP