Newark residents who have been impacted by Newark's water crisis can receive free lead screenings Saturday at University Hospital.
The decision to offer lead testing comes amid growing concern about the failure of water filters to remove lead from drinking water in some homes in Newark.
Some 14,000 homes in Newark connected to the Pequnnock treatment plant have lead service lines that began leaching lead into drinking water. When the problem was discovered, Newark began distributing Pur water filters to impacted homeowners.
However, on Friday, the EPA revealed that it had tested three filters and two of them had failed to reduce lead to safe levels. As a result, the city has asked residents who have installed water filters to switch to bottled water for drinking, cooking, and preparing baby formula until while testing is conducted.
“We know that the Newark community is very concerned about their water, and we are committed to providing the health information and services they need to be safe,” said Dr. Shereef Elnahal, president and CEO of University Hospital.
“We will continue to work closely with the City and State to support their efforts, including ensuring that community members have knowledge about their level of exposure and what can be done to better protect themselves and their families," Elnahal said. "Additionally, I want to encourage people who believe they have been impacted to follow up with their primary care physician immediately.”
Screenings will be held from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, August 17 at the Ambulatory Care Center at 140 Bergen Street. An appointment is required and can be scheduled by calling (973) 972-9000. Newark residents will be required to bring proof of address to the screenings and guardians accompanying minor children must bring proof of relationship to the minor.
University Hospital is also providing patients who are discharged from the hospital to a home supplied by the Pequannock water treatment plant with a starter kit, which includes bottled water and clear instructions on how to get more water from the City of Newark.
For the most up-to-date information on impacted addresses and water distribution, please visit: www.newarkleadserviceline.com.