Monday, March 21, 2011

Please Help Us Save Texas Newborns!

Newborn screening is under attack in Texas! Two bills are in pending in the Texas legislature that will radically change the way newborn screening is conducted. We need stop these bills to help save babies' lives! Please sign, even if you don't live in Texas.

Newborn screening is a test done on every baby in the country to test for certain diseases that result in death, severe mental retardation, disability or trauma if not detected early in life and treated. A few drops of blood are taken from the baby's heel shortly after birth and sent to states' public health laboratories for testing. These tests save the lives of thousands of babies nation-wide every year.

HB 2110 will make Texas the only state in the country to require parents to opt-in for screening services. There is no provision requiring education for prospective parents about newborn screening. This new opt-in policy and the lack of prenatal education about newborn screening will result in children missing the screening tests and suffering unnecessarily, becoming disabled, or dying.

HB 411 (and its companion bill in the Senate, SB 507) contains provisions that will make it very difficult for the state to add in diseases to the newborn screening program. Research is now occurring for muscular dystrophy, lysosomal storage disorders, certain ataxias, SCID and many more diseases. These babies deserve saving too! This bill needs amending to add provisions for prenatal education about newborn screening and state storage and use of leftover samples to save more babies' lives.

Newborn screening is an amazing program that saves countless tiny lives every year. Don't let Texas' babies suffer! Sign this petition and tell the Texas legislators to put babies first!

Sign this petition and let them know you oppose HB 2110, HB 411 and SB 507!

No comments: