07/01/2015 14:59 EDT
Screening for Critical Congenital Heart Disease (CCHD) is now required, by law, for all infants born in Rhode Island. Newborns will be screened for CCHD before hospital discharge and by using pulse oximetry. CCHD is a group of heart defects that often cause life-threatening symptoms soon after birth. Infants diagnosed with CCHD often require surgical interventions within the first year of life; however, CCHD is usually treatable if detected early. The addition of CCHD to Rhode Island's newborn screening panel was recommended nationally by the Secretary of Health and Human Services, endorsed by the Rhode Island Newborn Screening Advisory Committee and approved by the Director of Health. This change is consistent with national guidelines on expanded newborn screening.

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