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What It Is

​​​​​​​​​​​​​The Newborn Screening​​ Program helps determine if a baby has certain health disorders. A healthy newborn can have serious metabolic or genetic disorders that cannot be detected without specific screening. If left undetected and untreated, these disorders can lead to slow growth, blindness, brain damage or possibly death.

Your newborn should be screened 24 hours after birth or before leaving the hospital. The screening process involves a collection of blood from your baby’s heel, pulse oximetry for critical congenital heart disease (CCHD) and hearing tests.

For more information on the heel stick for the newborn screening, watch What to Expect From Your Baby's First Test provided by Baby's First Test website.

For more information on pulse oximetry testing for CCHD watch Pulse Ox for Newborns.

KY newborn screening brochure

Newborn Screening Brochure

What you need to do before baby comes

Salvando Vidas Una Prueba a la Vez

Kentucky Public Health Lab Tour 2019

Parent and Provider Resources

For information on specific disorders, select from the drop-down menu below.

Newborn Hearing Screening

The ability to hear is important for babies to learn language skills beginning at birth. Before your newborn leaves the hospital a screening test will be conducted to determine if your baby has hearing loss and if additional tests and evaluation are needed based on screening results. The hearing screening includes testing for congenital cytomegalovirus (CMV) and should be done by 21 days after birth unless the parent/guardian opts out of testing as provided by Kentucky Acts of the General Assembly Chapter 85.

Additional resources about hearing loss and CMV

Office for Children with Special Health Care Needs Newborn Hearing Screening Program

CDC | CMV Fact Sheet for Pregnant Women and Parents

CDC | Resources for Healthcare Providers

CDC | Basics About Heating Loss in Children

National CMV Foundation