Hundreds of blood lead test kits have been stolen from the Josiah Hill Clinic, and staff there are scrambling to pull together the funds to replace them.
Erin McNally, the clinic's executive director, says she wondered why the order of lead test kits she recently placed was not received at the organization's offices.
The clinic, a grassroots community based organization which provides free services for families, planned to use the test kits at its monthly blood lead testing clinics.
McNally says the company which shipped the test kits tracked the order -- which showed the package of tests was left on the front porch. However, the package was never received by Josiah Hill Clinic staff or the upstairs neighbors. Now she says her staff is starting to fear the worst.
"It is a shame the test supplies were taken, the order was for nearly 200 tests, which would have served families through June," she says.
The Josiah Hill III Clinic is named after the beloved former head of Oregon Physicians for Responsibility who campaigned for better services to families exposed to lead contamination. It is the only non-profit which provides free blood lead testing services for Portland Metro Area families.
Providing the free service costs the organization about $40 per test. McNally is hopeful community members will contribute to and support the needed services.
Donations are needed to replace the kits, but the clinic still plans to provide free blood lead tests at their upcoming scheduled clinics.
Donations can be mailed to PO Box 13207 Portland OR. 97213, or made online under the "get involved" section at www.jhillclinic.org, or call 503-802-7389.