WA: Newborn Screening Rule on Board of Health August Agenda

Aligning the newborn screening rule with recent legislation will be subject to a public hearing before the Board of Health at its meeting on Wednesday in Olympia.

During the 2014 legislative session, SHB 2544 was passed that made changes to RCW 70.83. The law, effective June 12, 2014, requires health care providers and hospitals to submit blood samples to the Department of Health within 48 hours of a child’s birth. It also requires that the family be notified of potential abnormalities.

These changes help ensure that more infants are screened regardless of their place of birth, and that parents and guardians receive test results quickly. A delayed test result or lack of a newborn screening test can put an infant at serious risk of disability or even death. The public can comment on these changes at 1:30 p.m.

The board will meet from 9:30 a.m. to 2:50 p.m. on Wednesday at the Cherberg Building, Senate Hearing Room 3 Capitol Campus, located 304 15th Ave SE. The public is welcome to attend and will be given an opportunity to provide testimony on any public health issue.

Copies of the agenda and related materials are available by contacting the board at 360-236-4100 or on the Board of Health website (sboh.wa.gov). The emergency and media contact number for the board during the meeting is 360-701-2398.