• Newborn Screening

Each year, about 98 percent of the 4 million newborns in the U.S. are screened for an array of serious genetic and other health conditions. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 12,500 newborns each year are diagnosed with one of the core conditions detected through newborn screening. This means about 1 in every 300 newborns screened is eventually diagnosed.

Texas hospitals play a critical role in screening newborns for certain, potentially devastating conditions that with early intervention and treatment can change a child’s future and prevent life-long disability or death.

Texas has required newborn screening since 1999, and like many other states, requires hospitals to conduct three types of screenings on all newborns born in their facilities:

1. Hearing.
2. Congenital metabolic and genetic disorders (bloodspot).
3. Critical congenital heart disease.

Because of the severity of these conditions, it’s imperative that hospitals screen accurately and timely and deliver accurate and timely screening results for every baby.


Carrie Kroll, vice president of advocacy, public health and quality, 512-465-1043

Download the Newborn Screening Whitepaper

In collaboration with OZ Systems, the newborn hearing screening vendor for Texas Department of State Health Services, the Texas Hospital Association is helping educate Texas hospitals on the best practices for and benefits of newborn screening to:

 Increase the number of newborns in Texas who are screened for serious conditions according to evidence-based timelines.
 Reduce challenges for hospitals, providers and families.

THA and OZ Systems hosted on Oct. 9 an "Implementing Best Practices for Newborn Screening in Hospitals" webinar. The webinar covered the three different screenings and best practices and benefits of each.

Important Updates

Tips on How to Complete the Demographic Form

Manual entry on the demographic form:

Complete all areas.
Use black ink.
Write in CAPITAL LETTERS, and apply enough pressure for carbon copy.
Enter correct birth date and collection date.
Enter GRAMS for birthweight.
Enter only LAST NAME in Last Name Field.
Enter only FIRST NAME in First Name Field.
Write corresponding number in the box for numbered fields.

Using DSHS approved demographic labels:

Ensure all entered information is printed correctly on labels.
Enter correct birth date and collection date.

Please ensure all information is complete, accurate and legible prior to shipping. Incorrect, missing, misplaced or invalid information can cause specimen rejection, delays in testing and incorrect testing results and reports.

See the Newborn Screening Kit Completion video for more information.

Hemoglobin G Reporting Resumed October 11, 2018

Effective 10/11/2018, specimens showing possible Hemoglobin G during testing, resumed reporting as “Hemoglobin G”.

TDSHS Changes Hemoglobin Reporting for Newborn Screening Submitters

Due to issues with quality control material, effective Sept. 6, 2018, “Hemoglobin G” will no longer be reported. Specimens showing possible Hemoglobin G during testing will be reported as “Other” hemoglobin variant.

Report Diagnosed Cases of Critical Congenital Heart Disease in Newborns

TDSHS and THA ask Texas hospitals report diagnosed cases of critical congenital heart disease in newborns to support research and prevention efforts.
 Download the Notice


In this Capitol Update, THA's Carrie Kroll and Lance Lunsford discuss the importance of newborn screening.