Wednesday, April 18, 2012

A Lifesaving Initiative for Infants

The Connecticut State Senate approved Senate Bill 56 tonight - An Act Concerning Pulse Oximetry Screening for Newborn Infants. This is a priority of my constituent, Marie Hatcher, the proud mother of Mathew.

Marie Hatcher is a special lady with amazing persistence. Marie discovered that congenital heart defects are sometimes undiagnosed in newborn babies. Thankfully, that was not the case with her son Matthew but discovered during pregnancy. Matthew has experienced a lifetime of doctors and hospitals in his short life and thankfully he is getting the very best medical care for his heart defect.

Unfortunately, many cases of congenital heart defects in babies are not recognized until after an emergency health event or even death. Pulse oximetry screening is the current technology to identify defects at birth and the cost is only ten dollars ($10) per newborn. Marie thought this was a travesty and should be corrected so she contacted me to ask for my support of legislation mandating the screening.

Fast-forward to tonight and another positive step in the legislative process. The unanimous vote in the Senate moves the bill to the House for approval and hopefully on to the Governor for his signature.

Matthew's Hearts of Hope is the non-profit organization organized by Marie Hatcher to advance the cause of heart defect screening. Please consider supporting this worthwhile effort and say a prayer for Matthew.