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    Be an advocate for Pennsylvania Babies!

    Critical Congenital Heart Disease (CCHD) is a problem with the heart’s structure and/or function which is present at birth and which causes severe, life threatening symptoms and requires medical intervention within the first few hours, days, or months of life. CCHD can be identified through newborn screening before a baby is discharged from the hospital or birthing center. Identifying CCHD early through newborn screening allows an infant to receive treatment quickly, which can improve outcomes.

    The Pennsylvania March of Dimes Chapter was very pleased when the Newborn Screening Director announced at the last Technical Advisory Board meeting that the state’s Secretary of Health had accepted the Board's recommendation to add screening for CCHD and that the Department of Health would start CCHD screening January 1, 2013.  However, the state has issued no formal announcement or implementation plan about the screening. Our Chapter is concerned that screening may not go into effect January 1, 2013.

    In order to get confirmation from state officials, we are asking advocates to write to the Governor about this issue. Please contact Governor Tom Corbett at governor@pa.gov and ask the Governor to confirm that all newborns will be screened for CCHD effective January 1, 2013 and what the Department of Health’s plan is to implement this life saving screening.

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