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Welcome to the Newborn Screening Program

History

The concept of newborn screening began in Buffalo, New York in 1960 with the work of Robert Guthrie, M.D., Ph.D. Now, all 50 states have newborn screening programs. New York's began in 1965 and we screen for more disorders than many other states. Since the program began, millions of babies have been screened and many newborns affected with the targeted disorders have been identified. New York State's law for newborn screening, Public Health Law 2500-a, passed in 1964, originally required screening for only one genetic disorder, phenylketonuria (PKU), a metabolic disease which, if left untreated, can cause brain damage. In 1996, the Public Health Law was amended to require that all newborns also be screened for exposure to HIV. Today newborns are screened for more than 40 inherited metabolic conditions, hemoglobinopathies including sickle cell disease, cystic fibrosis, endocrine disorders, Krabbe Disease and most recently Severe Combined Immunodeficiency (SCID).