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Ted Shaw Blog
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A Healthy Delivery Includes Newborn Screening

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Each year, about 98 percent of the 4 million newborns in the United States are screened for an array of 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 focus on three main screenings that identify hearing loss, critical congenital heart disease and genetic disorders. About six in every 1000 babies are born with permanent hearing loss, according to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. Data from the Association of Public Health Laboratories indicate that more than 12,000 newborns are affected by genetic disorders identified through blood spot screening each year. Congenital heart disease, which affects 40,000 newborns a year, is the most common and deadly of all birth defects.

The good news is that with early detection and intervention, newborns with certain conditions that may once have led to disability or death can grow up to be healthy adults, thanks to medical advances.

Texas hospitals have a unique and privileged, but sometimes challenging, role in this vital public health mission to help our state’s new members.

To improve Texas’ newborn screening rates and coordination among hospitals, physicians and families, we are working together with national experts to share best practices.

On Oct. 9, please join THA for a free webinar that will share the latest on those best practices. Register here.

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