The conditions in your home can seriously affect your health. Homes built before 1978 often have lead paint hazards which can result in lead poisoning of children. Asthma has been linked to the presence of mold, dust mites and other pests such as cockroaches, and pets in housing. Moderate or severe physical problems in the housing units place residents at increased rick for fire, electrical injuries, indoor toxicants, tobacco smoke, combustible gases and carbon monoxide, can affect everyone regardless of socioeconomic status. Housing-related health hazards can affect everyone.
Although homes of any age or value can contain serious hazards, older homes that are poorly maintained usually present the greatest risks. The burden of housing hazards disproportionately affects certain age and income groups, races and ethnicities, and various geographically. Anyone can suffer from housing-related illnesses or injuries; however, certain groups are more susceptible.
Age– Children are more vulnerable to environmental exposures due to their developing organs and nervous system. Children living in older homes are more vulnerable to having elevated blood lead levels. Elderly adults are more susceptible to certain housing-related hazards such as injuries or falls.
Income and Ethnicity– Low-income, minority populations are more likely to live in homes with structural defects and environmental hazards. Low-income households and older homes are also more likely to have high concentrations of mouse and cockroach allergens.
Geographical Location– Some hazards are more common in certain geographical locations. For example, radon gas levels vary across geographic areas. Housing developments maybe located near chemical plants or refineries and landfills.
Through an agreement with Pinnacle Health Systems, which has a Lead and Healthy Homes Program Grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Health, the York City Bureau of Health will provide Lead and Healthy Homes inspections to identify a variety of environmental health and safety concerns. Education will be provided to help correct the concerns and referrals to appropriate agencies will be made to correct or lessen the concerns.
Purpose – The purpose of the Lead and Healthy Homes Program is to promote housing that is healthy and safe and to reduce hospitalizations, injuries, illnesses, or deaths from preventable home health and safety risks.
This program aims to address multiple hazards in homes and prevent diseases and/or injuries that results from housing-related hazards by:
- Conducting comprehensive home assessments
- Providing education and low-cost or no-cost interventions to prevent health or safety or safety problems before negative outcomes occur
- Coordinating follow-up medical care in the event that health conditions are identified
- Establishing or strengthening partnerships with stakeholders to reduce health and safety risks in homes.
- Collaborating with appropriate enforcement agencies to enforce existing regulations that address healthy housing issues