Newborn Screenings

New England Newborn Screening Program

It is a requirement under Massachusetts law that all newborns are screened for ten treatable diseases. The chance your baby will have one of these disorders is very small. Testing all babies is important because most appear healthy at birth, even those who have diseases that can be detected by newborn screening.

Newborn screening entails collecting a few small drops of blood when the newborn is about two days old and sending the specimen to an outside screening lab. This provides an early opportunity to detect certain disorders before symptoms appear. In the rare cases when a disorder is found, early diagnosis and treatment can usually prevent associated problems. For the small number of babies who do have one of these diseases, newborn screening can make a lifetime of difference. If the screening shows that your infant has signs of one of the disorders, your pediatrician will contact you for follow-up.

Hallmark Health Newborn Hearing Screening Program

To identify hearing impairment in babies as early as possible, Melrose-Wakefield Hospital conducts a hearing screening for every baby prior to discharge. The test is done while your baby is asleep, takes about 15 minutes and is painless. The results of the screening are provided to you. If there needs to be a follow-up hearing screen, you will be provided information on how to schedule an appointment. Please consult your physician if you have questions regarding hearing loss.

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