Chloe’s Law Passes Senate Committee; Moves to Full Senate for Consideration
Bill Would Ensure All Babies Receive Additional Life-Saving ScreeningSt. Louis, Missouri, March 01, 2013
Chloe’s Law, the March of Dimes-supported bill currently up for consideration in the Missouri Legislature, is one step closer to passing. The Senate Veterans’ Affairs and Health Committee voted in favor of Chloe’s Law (Senate Bill 230) yesterday. Now the bill moves to the Senate floor for a full vote.
This is the fourth year that Kelly Manz, Chloe’s mother, has been advocating for passage of Chloe’s Law.
Chloe’s Law will save lives by requiring all newborns to be screened for Critical Congenital Heart Disease (CCHD). According to the Missouri Department of Health & Senior Services, since 2007, an estimated 54 babies died in Missouri from undiagnosed CCHD deaths that could have been prevented if CCHD were detected and treated earlier.
“March of Dimes has been instrumental in expanding newborn screening in Missouri and across the country,” said Mary Elizabeth Grimes, State Director. “We are supportive of expanded newborn screening when there is a documented medical benefit to early detection, a reliable screening test exists, and early detection can be done through specific means – all of which exist for CCHD screening.”
Congenital heart disease is the number one cause of infant death from birth defects. CCHD is a subgroup of congenital heart disease that affects approximately 4,800 babies born in the United States each year. Babies with CCHD have a heart defect that requires intervention, such as surgery, in the first few hours, days or months of life. In September 2011, the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services added screening for CCHD to the Recommended Uniform Screening Panel. In Missouri, only about 75 percent of hospitals currently perform the screening. CCHD screening is done through a simple, non-invasive test called “pulse oximetry” that can detect CCHD before a baby shows signs of the condition, allowing for the proper treatment to be given to prevent disability or death.
Chloe’s Law – Next Steps
Week of 3/4/13: Third Reading of the Bill on Senate Floor
Week of 3/11/13: Fourth and final reading in the Senate, then the bill will go to the House where it undergoes the same process