Indiana to test and remove lead from South Bend homes over five-year period

EAST CHICAGO, Ind. (AP) — Indiana will spend up to $3 million annually over the next five years to provide lead testing, prevention and removal in East Chicago, South Bend and other cities with higher risks for lead exposure among children from low-income families.

The Indiana Family and Social Services Administration expects the funding from the federal Children’s Health Insurance Program will cover the costs of testing and abatement for hundreds of homes per year. It says funds also will go toward education.

The initiative will serve families eligible for Medicaid or CHIP. State data shows that in 2012, about 96 percent of Indiana children who had elevated blood lead levels were Medicaid recipients.

The federal government banned lead-based paint in 1978 but it remains a common source of lead poisoning in young children.

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