A health screening is a test done to find a condition before symptoms begin. Screening tests help find diseases and conditions early, when they are easier to treat. Routine health screenings are recommended for people throughout life as an important part of preventive care.
What You Should Do
Talk to your doctor about what screenings you need and when you should have them. Different screenings may be recommended depending on your age, sex, family history, and if you have risk factors for certain diseases.
What We Do
Rhode Island has a number of programs in place to help people of all ages get needed health screenings. It is important to note that the list below does not include all of the health screenings that people need throughout their lives.
Maternal & Newborn Health
Rhode Island recommends HIV testing as a routine test during pregnancy. Without treatment, an HIV-infected woman has about a 1-in-4 chance of infecting her baby during pregnancy or delivery. Medical treatment can reduce this to about a 1-in-2 chance. more
Newborn Blood & Hearing Screenings
To identify risks at the earliest possible point, Rhode Island law requires all babies to be screened for 28 health conditions and for hearing loss.
Childhood & Adolescence
Childhood Lead Poisoning Screening
Lead is very dangerous to young children. All children need at least two lead screening tests before they reach 36 months of age. Some children need to be screened until they are six years of age.
Childhood Vision Screening
Early detection and correction of vision problems help children prepare to learn in school. All children entering kindergarten are required by state law to have a vision screening done by their primary care provider before the start of the school year. more
Early Childhood Developmental Screening
Children with possible developmental delays need care and services as early as possible. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that all infants and young children receive developmental and behavioral screenings at regular intervals using standardized screening tools. more
Early Periodic Screening, Diagnosis, and Treatment
All children, from birth to age 21, who have Medical Assistance coverage are eligible to receive preventive, routine healthcare as well as medically necessary specialized care or services. These services are available at a child's regular visit with his or her doctor. They help identify and treat health conditions early to promote normal growth and development.
Good oral health lets children eat, smile, grow, learn, and concentrate in school. Rhode Island law requires every student to have a yearly dental screening through the fifth grade and at least once between the sixth and tenth grades. Students can be screened by their school or private dentist. Parents must make sure screenings by private dentists are included in the child's school health record. When a school dental screening finds that a child may have a dental problem, the parent will be notified. more
Sexual & Reproductive Health
Early diagnosis of hepatitis can help prevent spreading the disease and protect the liver. People who may have been exposed to Hepatitis A, B, or C should contact their primary care physician or go to a state-funded testing site. more
HIV testing is recommended for people who are sexually active, people who have ever shared syringes or drug-injecting materials, people being treated for a sexually-transmitted infection, and pregnant women. Confidential HIV testing is available at sites across the state.
Sexually-Transmitted Disease Testing
Testing for sexually-transmitted diseases (STDs) is very important for anyone who may have been exposed to an STD, even if they have no symptoms. Screening can help detect and treat STDs and prevent the spread of disease. more STD testing is available at many places in Rhode Island. more
Women's Cancer Screening
Breast and cervical cancers are easier to treat when found early. The Rhode Island Women's Cancer Screening Program provides breast and cervical cancer screening, follow-up, treatment, and support services for low-income women. more
Refugees approved to resettle in Rhode Island must have an overseas medical examination before traveling here. They must have another health screening within 30 days of arrival in Rhode Island. more