Sunday, June 12, 2011

Pulse Oximetry Screening

Facebook has exploded this week with pages dedicated to promoting Pulse Oximetry Screening all across the country. Each state is trying to petition their legislation to pass a law in all 50 states which will make it mandatory for hospitals to perform a pulse oximetry screen on every newborn prior to discharge.

A pulse ox test is simple and non-invasive. It also costs less than a diaper change. It looks like a little band-aid that is wrapped around the infants foot or hand. It then displays the oxygen level and heart rate on a monitor. I am sure if you have ever been in the hospital you have had a little white clip attached to your finger, that is a pulse ox.
Infant Pulse Ox Probe
1 in 100 babies are born with Congenital Heart Disease (CHD). For some of the most severe cases, a simple check of oxygen saturations in the newborn can indicate the presence of a heart defect. Pulse oximetry does not detect all heart defects, but is effective in the more severe cases. Time is of the essence when a child is born with a severe congenital heart defect. The quicker treatment is established, chances of survival increase.

Recently two states (Maryland and New Jersey) have passed this bill into law and it is our dream that all 50 states will soon follow in their footsteps!

How you can help...

1. Support your State by “Liking” their Facebook page.
Facebook pages for every state are being set up all over the country. To see a list of States who currently have a page click here. If you don't see your state, start a page of your own!

Don't forget to click here to check out a list of states that currently have or are in the process of getting a pulse ox bill approved.

 2. Write your Senator petitioning to pass this bill.
A fellow heart mom Kristine McCormick has made this easy! Kristine's daughter Cora was born on November 30th, 2009. On December 6th Cora died suddenly and unexpectedly in her mother's arms of an undetected congenital heart defect while she was breastfeeding. Her mother has been fighting to make it mandatory for Pulse Ox Screening to be done ever since. Cora lives on through all of us fighting to make a difference in her honor.

Kristine has set up a site that is dedicated to Pulse Oximetry Advocacy. You can find sample letters, articles and a ton of other information to help you in petitioning for Pulse Ox in your state!
Click here to Visit Cora's Hopes and Dreams

Five Easy Steps to Pulse Oximetry Advocacy- by Kristine McCormick

3. Educate yourself on Pulse Oximetry Screening.

Here are some articles to help you educate yourself and for you to attach to your petition!

New Jersey Signs Bill requiring New Jersey Hospitals to Screen Newborns for Congenital Heart Defects

Maryland Governor Signs Bill that Will Help Newborn Screening for Congenital Heart Disease

Map of where we are in the US on Pulse Ox Screening. We have a long way to go!

4. Spread the Word.
Share your State’s Pulse Ox page with everyone you know and help spread the word about Pulse Oximetry Screening.
 Thank each of you in advance for helping us reach this dream and literally helping us save lives!


1 comment:

  1. This is a GREAT post! Just an update that I've moved my resources over to a new site!