Settlement means more children will be tested for lead

SEATTLE (AP)  -- More Washington children will be eligible for lead-poisoning testing under a settlement approved by the federal court last month.

The settlement stems from a class-action lawsuit filed in April, alleging the state failed to screen children in Medicaid for lead poisoning as required by federal law.

The Seattle Times reports ( ) all children in the state covered by the low-income health-care program will be eligible for testing if their parents request it, or if they live in old buildings, are recent immigrants or face other exposure risks.

Lead exposure can affect nearly every system in the body.

Even though Medicaid mandated universal screening, in recent years, only about 3 percent were screened in Washington compared to about 11 percent nationwide.