Parents told to submit babies for screening
PARENTS were urged to have their babies one year old and below undergo newborn screening to determine if they suffer congenital metabolic disorder.
Ruff Vincent Valdevieso, newborn screening nurse coordinator of the Department of Health (DOH), said newborn screening will help parents deal with their baby’s disorder at the earliest time.
He said most babies with metabolic or congenital disorders look “normal” at birth but newborn screening can help detect any underlying disorders even before signs and symptoms manifest.
Valdevieso said the parent can refuse the test in behalf of his/her baby by signing the hospital’s refusal form.
Newborn screening is ideally done 24 hours immediately after birth but it can also be done one year after.
The screening is conducted by taking a few drops of blood from the baby’s heel, which is blotted on a special filter card and sent to a newborn screening center.
The result can be claimed from the health facility where the newborn underwent screening within 7-14 working days.
In case the baby tests positive for a certain disease, he or she will have to undergo a confirmatory test.
Valdevieso said only 60 percent of newborns in Central Visayas underwent screening.
Newborn screening is available in hospitals, rural health units, health centers, and private clinics.
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