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Lead In Water: PA Senate Democrats Discuss The Situation Here

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - The Flint Michigan water fiasco has started discussions about lead in many cities.

In West Philadelphia Thursday, members of the Pennsylvania Senate Democratic Policy Committee held a roundtable discussion about lead exposure with public policy and medical experts.

"It is a brain poison," says Dr. Kevin Osterhoudt.

And the brain poison known as lead poses the gravest danger to infants living in very old homes. Dr. Osterhoudt told Democratic Senators Vincent Hughes, Anthony Williams and Lisa Boscola that lead is not just a water problem:

"Most of the lead that we talk about in Pa. is from the paint and it goes into a dust and the dust is microscopic and you get it on your fingers. And everybody has seen their child who picks anything up from the floor and what's the first thing they do is they stick their finger in their mouth and they like it and so they get that exposure."

For Hughes, Democratic Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, the discussion was more of a fact-finding mission that he hopes will lead to better ways of reducing the risk:

"One of the things that a number of doctors discussed was the fact that if you know communities that are high risk to intervene early. Get into those homes, do the appropriate remediation so that the child is born into a house that is not at risk.

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