Screening Programs

Newborn screening identifies conditions that can affect a child's long-term health or survival. Through early detection, many of these conditions can be treated so that children can grow and thrive to reach their full potential.

Each year, millions of babies in the U.S. are routinely screened. The testing process is simple: a few drops of blood from your newborn's heel is collected when your baby is about two days old. That blood is tested for certain genetic, endocrine, and metabolic disorders.

State public health departments determine what conditions are screened for in routine and optional panels.

Parents in Massachusetts 

Routine newborn screening is required in Massachusetts. Optional screenings, also known as pilot studies, are also available.

Parents in Other States

A state's public health department determines the conditions that are screened for in that state using federal guidelines.