NEHA October 2022 Journal of Environmental Health

24 Volume 85 • Number 3 A D VANC EME N T O F T H E SCIENCE Introduction Health and safety hazards in housing remain significant public health concerns, particularly for vulnerable populations such as children, who spend 80–95% of their time inside their homes (Breysse & Gant, 2017; U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2019). A myriad of adverse health consequences have been linked to dilapidated housing conditions, including elevated blood lead levels, exacerbated asthma, and numerous types of injury (Sokolowsky et al., 2017; Srinivasan et al., 2003). Exposure to lead-based paint in homes constructed prior to 1978 poses multiple hazards to children, usually via inhalation of lead dust, ingestion of lead paint chips, or both. Blood lead concentrations of <10 µg/dL have been associated with behavioral issues, cognitive impairment, and neurological damage (Council on Environmental Health, 2016; Mankikar et al., 2016). There is no safe level of exposure to lead. In 2021, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC, 2022) updated its blood lead reference value to 3.5 µg/dL for children. This level of exposure can still have adverse ešects on IQ, academic performance, and ability to pay attention (CDC, 2022). Related negative developmental and learning outcomes include attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), attention deficit disorder (ADD), lower birth weight, and lower IQ in children. Blood lead concentrations of >100 µg/dL have severe health consequences, including encephalopathy and even death (Council on Environmental Health, 2016). Housing deficiencies can also contribute to asthma development and exacerbation. In the U.S., asthma is recognized as the most common chronic illness among children, ašecting 1 in 15 individuals (Mankikar et al., 2016). Asthma has multiple in-home triggers, including mold, excess moisture, dust, pests, and tobacco smoke that stays on carpets or clothing (Breysse & Gant, 2017; Mankikar et al., 2016). Low-income individuals, racial and ethnic minorities, and people who live in the central area of a city where older housing stock is more prevalent, seek hospital care more frequently than do other populations (Mankikar et al., 2016). Injuries in the home can be caused by numerous health and safety hazards and include falls, burns, fires, and unintentional poisonings (Mankikar et al., 2016). Further, structural issues such as cracks in walls, holes in ceilings, peeling paint, or leaking pipes can also contribute to health issues for occupants and their children (Srinivasan et al., 2003). Lead Hazard Control and Healthy Homes Grants The O£ce of Lead Hazard Control and Healthy Homes within the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has long worked to prevent lead poisoning and address multiple health and safety hazards with its Lead Hazard Control and Healthy Homes Grants for state and local governments (Breysse & Gant, 2017; HUD, 2009). HUD (2009) estimates that due to this initiative, approximately 70% of learning disAbs t r ac t The outcomes of the Las Vegas Lead Hazard Control and Healthy Homes Program (Las Vegas LHCHHP) are characterized in this article by the prevalence, type, and location of lead-based paint and healthy homes hazards. A total of 62 participants were recruited for our program from residents of Las Vegas, Nevada, and were enrolled from 2018 until March 2020 according to U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development requirements. Participants received a combined lead inspection and risk assessment, as well as a healthy homes visual assessment if leadbased paint hazards were identified. Occupant and housing characteristics were also recorded. The majority of Las Vegas LHCHHP housing units had ≥1 lead dust hazard, and most had ≥1 lead-based paint hazard on a variety of components. Domestic hygiene and structural issues were the most frequently identified healthy homes hazards. Lead-based paint and other health hazards were common in Las Vegas LHCHHP housing. Our findings could inform future occupant education and lead hazard control and healthy homes programs in other jurisdictions. Daidre Gamboa Casey Barber, MPH Erin Sheehy, MPH Selam Ayele Shawn L. Gerstenberger, PhD Department of Environmental and Occupational Health School of Public Health University of Nevada, Las Vegas Lead-Based Paint and Other In-Home Health Hazards in Las Vegas, Nevada: Findings of the Las Vegas Lead Hazard Control and Healthy Homes Program