Childhood Lead Screening Notice

Posted on: August 3, 2010

Safe and Healthy HomesSafe and Healthy Homes is a primary prevention partnership linking parents and resources in an effort to abate lead hazards before toddlers begin crawling and exploring the home environment.  Safe and Healthy Homes is funded by the Environmental Protection Agency and the US Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Illinois Department of Health and Family Services Informational Notice (.pdf)

This notice provides a reminder to providers that all HFS-enrolled children should be screened with a blood lead test at ages 12 and 24 months, or up to 72 months, if they have not been previously screened.

Additionally, this notice updates policy regarding childhood lead screening:

• Providers enrolled for Category of Service 30 who have the requisite equipment may bill for Clinical Laboratory Improvement Act (CLIA) waived blood lead analysis [ESA Biosciences LeadCare II Blood Lead Testing System (Whole Blood)] using the Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) Code 83655 with the QW modifier.

• Providers enrolled for Category of Service 30 who send blood lead specimens to the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) laboratory for analysis may bill for venous or capillary blood lead draw. The provider who draws the specimen for IDPH to process may bill for obtaining the sample by using the CPT Code 36415 or 36416 with the U1 modifier.

• Child health services that are preventive in nature such as well-child screening services, childhood immunizations, lead screening, vision screening, hearing screening and objective developmental or risk screening should be accompanied with a preventive child heath diagnosis code (e.g. V202). Providers are reminded that the “V” is part of the diagnosis code and must be reported on claim. Claims received without the “V” will be rejected.

You can review a copy of the Provisions of the Illinois Lead Poisoning Prevention Code at:

For information on childhood lead poisoning, please contact the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) at 217-782-0403, or visit the IDPH Web site at:

Providers in Chicago should contact the Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH) at 312-746-7810, or visit the CDPH Web site at:

Blood Lead Specimen Handling:

HFS encourages providers to send all blood lead specimens to the IDPH laboratory for analysis. Providers who utilize the state laboratory for blood lead analysis can order supplies for blood lead specimen collection free of charge by calling the IDPH Laboratory Shipping Section at 217-524-6222, or by downloading the Clinical Supplies Requisition Form from the HFS Web site located at:

Instructions on ground transport of blood lead specimen can be found at:

Reporting Results:

In order to ensure that children receive appropriate public health follow-up services, physicians and other health providers have an obligation to report blood lead results greater than or equal to 10μg/dL within 48 hours to the IDPH Childhood Lead Poisoning Reporting System at 217-782-0403.

• Providers using the IDPH laboratory are not required to report blood lead results.

• Directors of private laboratories performing blood lead analyses are legally required to report all results to IDPH: results >10μg/dL within 48 hours and results <10μg/dL within 30 days (410 ILCS 45/7; 77 Ill. Adm Code 845.20).

HFS-enrolled children are at greatest risk for lead poisoning, a condition which can cause serious health problems, including seizures, coma, and death. Because children with elevated blood lead levels in the 10-25μg/dL range do not develop clinical symptoms, screening is necessary to identify children who need environmental or medical intervention. Blood lead levels as low as 10 μg/dL have been associated with adverse effects on cognitive development, growth, and behavior among young children. Children with a confirmed blood lead test result of 10 μg/dL or more should receive case management activities from their local health department. Providers are encouraged to work with the child’s local health department to coordinate services of children with elevated blood lead levels.

Your participation in our health care program is beneficial to the health and well being of Illinois children. Together we can ensure that each child has the ability to achieve their greatest potential through the identification and treatment of lead poisoning in young children.

If you have questions regarding this notice, please contact the Bureau of Comprehensive Health Services at 1-877-782-5565.


For more information about lead poisoning prevention and the Safe and Healthy Homes Project, please contact:

Jennie Pinkwater
Director, Prevention Projects
1400 W. Hubbard
Chicago, IL 60642
312/733-1026, ext 213
Fax: 312/733-1791