The North Carolina Chapter of March of Dimes, in conjunction with the American Heart Association (AHA) celebrated Valentine’s Day with the introduction of legislation aimed at detecting critical congenital heart defects (CCHD) in infants through pulse oximetry screening. Pulse oximetry is a non-invasive screening test that helps identify newborns with heart defects and potentially save their lives. House Bill 105, introduced by Representative Jim Fulghum (Wake) and a companion Senate Bill to be introduced by Senator Andrew Brock (Davie) will add this simple test to the state newborn screening panel.
“Screening newborns for critical congenital heart disease is a great way to help with early detection. It can improve health outcomes for babies with significant health problems but who appear well in the newborn nursery. Adding it to newborn screening is the perfect way to make sure that all babies are screened, regardless of where they are born in the state,” said Dr. Alex Kemper, associate professor of Pediatrics at Duke University.