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New Hampshire to begin screening newborns for genetic disorder group

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CONCORD, New Hampshire — New Hampshire is expanding its newborn screening program to include testing for a group of genetic disorders that often prove fatal if not detected and treated early.

Starting Tuesday, the Department of Health and Human Services will screen newborns for Severe Combined Immunodeficiency Disorder, which occurs in an estimated 1 in 40,000 babies.

About 12,300 babies are screened each year in New Hampshire. Blood is drawn by a simple heel stick between 24 and 48 hours after birth.

The expansion is consistent with national guidelines for newborn screening and was recommended by an advisory board that includes families, the medical community and public health officials.

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