HC Deb 28 November 1997 vol 301 c686W
Mr. Dafis

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment he has made of the extent of the damage to children's health caused by lead pollution. [17298]

Ms Jowell

Clinical lead poisoning in children is now very rare, and is expected to decrease as old leaded paint becomes less common. Controls on exposure to lead from many sources have resulted in a very substantial fall in blood lead levels in children generally. Recent surveys indicate that about 5 per cent. of children have blood lead levels in the range where there is persuasive evidence of subclinical harm to neuropsychological development. In nearly all such children, the estimated effect is a deficit of one to three IQ points. Exposure to lead will continue to decrease as a consequence of current and proposed measures.