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Newborn Genetic Screening Program

Nurse performing the newborn screening test on an infant.

The State of New Mexico mandates two Newborn Screens be collected on every Newborn born in New Mexico. The Newborn Screen is a blood test that is initially done between 24- 48 hours of age and the second Newborn Screen is done 10 – 14 days after birth. The New Mexico Newborn Screening Program (NMNBSP) offers screening for genetic/metabolic/endocrine and other disorders (see Newborn Screening Test Information) and provides services to over 26,000 and their families annually.

New Mexico Newborn Screening Program continues to partner with Mountain States Genetics Regional Collaborative and has also contracted with Oregon State Public Health Laboratory for testing.


Why Do We Screen?

Babies with these conditions appear normal at birth. It is only with time that the conditions affects the baby’s brain or physical development or causes other medical problems. By then the damage may be permanent. Early diagnosis and treatment can result in normal growth and development and can reduce morbidity and mortality.

Follow-Up Services

  • Children’s Medical Services (CMS) provides clinical long-term follow-up for children that have been identified with a disorder on the newborn screening panel. Children are followed from the time of diagnosis to the age of 21.
  • CMS has social workers in health offices throughout the state. Medical Social Workers provide service coordination for children and youth with special health care needs.
  • CMS has 2 Registered Nurses Brenda Romero RN, BSN (505-476-8857) and Carla Ortiz RN, BSN (505-476-8858) in the Newborn Screening Program.
  • New Mexico Newborn Screening Program has an established relationship with the UNM Department of Pediatrics at the UNM Health Science Center/Children’s Hospital
  • CMS has an Adult Cystic Fibrosis Program and provides some adult metabolic disease services

Healthcare Providers & Hospitals

Practitioner's Manual

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Provides a wealth of information for the newborn screening practitioner including screening essentials, conditions included in the screening panel, summary of conditions, criteria for requesting follow-up specimens, screening practices, recommendations for specimen collection, unsatisfactory specimens, reporting results, problems in screening practice, educational services, fees and screening kit information, exemptions, and more.

Test Information

Our Newborn Screening Test Information document offers a comprehensive listing all of the conditions and disorders which the newborn screening program currently tests for.

Procedures

Our Newborn Screening Specimen Collection Procedure explains how to properly collect a bloodspot specimen. The Newborn Screening Packing & Shipping Procedure then explains how to pack and ship specimens to the newborn screening program.

Transfusions

Collect a specimen for the Newborn Screening test before giving blood to an infant Why? If there’s a transfusion before the first newborn screening specimen is collected, it can affect results for Galactosemia, Biotinidase Deficiency, and Hemoglobinopathies.

Parents That Choose Not To Have Newborn Screening

  • Contact New Mexico Newborn Screening Program for a refusal form.
  • Review refusal form with parent.
  • Review with parent two newborn Screening brochures provided by the State of New Mexico Newborn Screening Program.
  • Have parents sign refusal form stating their intention to refuse screening.
  • Send Refusal form to the Newborn Screening Program, 2040 S. Pacheco, Santa Fe, NM 87505.

Brochure

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This helpful brochure explains how genetic tests could save your baby’s life. It covers why babies need newborn screening tests, how the testing is performed, how you will get the results, why some babies need more testing, where you can ask questions, and more.

What Happens to Leftover Blood Spots?

After Newborn Screening is completed, the small amount of dried blood that remains on the filter paper card is saved in case it needs to be retested or used to adjust the instruments to assure proper performance for testing. No blood spots collected in New Mexico will be used for research. All blood spots are destroyed at one year.

Blood Spot Kits

Please contact Mary Lewis at 505-476-8865 or 1-877-890-4692 to order blood spot kits and allow at least 3-5 shipping days for delivery of forms.

NOTE: The State of New Mexico mandates two tests. See House Bill 479 (2005) Newborn Child Medical Test Requirements and House Bill 9 (2014) Require Newborn Infant Heart Disease Testing for details. Babies can be screened up to 6 months of age. The specimen of a baby older than 6 months will only be accepted by written request from the Oregon State Public Health Lab.

Single Kits: $25.00

  • Newborn Screening single kits are designed to be used only when the family has lost the original second half of the double kit or when the Oregon State Public Health Laboratory requests another sample.
  • These kits can be obtained at a local public health office by the parent at no cost. For more information contact Brenda Romero at 505-476-8857 or Carla Ortiz at 505-476-8858.
  • Cost of a single kit for laboratory and physician offices is $25.00.

Double Kits: $114.00

  • Double kits are 2-part filter paper bloodspot forms.
  • To order kits call Mary Lewis at 505-476-8865 or 1-877-890-4692
  • The forms are bar coded in order to link the first form with the second form.
  • Second bloodspot form is not to be used as a first bloodspot for another client.
  • Parents need to be instructed on the importance of bringing the second bloodspot form with them to their first newborns appointment or lab visit.

Triple Kits: $114.00

  • Used in the newborn intensive care units.
  • These forms can be purchased by Newborn Intensive Care Units only.
  • To order kits call Mary Lewis at 505-476-8865 or 1-877-890-4692
  • Cost $114.00 - No additional fee for triple kits.

Newborn Hearing Screening

All birthing hospitals in New Mexico are required to screen newborns for hearing loss prior to discharge from the hospital. The Department of Health's Children's Medical Services assists families in accessing needed services when infants require follow-up after screening.

If you need help finding services for your baby or are concerned about your child's hearing please visit the Newborn Hearing Screening Program section of our website.


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