Study on Newborn Screening for Congenital Hypothyroidism in India– Is Overdue
Neonatal screening is an important public health prevention service, and is the world’s standard care procedure. Despite having been developed in many countries for more than 50 years, India has yet to launch any publicly funded programme. The aim of neonatal screening is to decrease newborn morbidity and mortality. In contrast to the cost associated with delayed care, diagnosis must provide a direct advantage for the baby and be cost effective. The screening of a baby at birth for congenital hypothyroidism specifically follows these criteria (CHT). Though systematic neonatal screening for congenital hypothyroidism was introduced in several countries in the early 1970s, an estimated 10,000 babies are born each year in India with congenital hypothyroidism, but there is no screening programme for this. We present the details of our report, which shows that CHT has a high incidence in India and is an urgent public screening priority.
Dr. Prof. R. Kishore Kumar
Cloudnine Hospitals, Bangalore, India and Department of Neonatology & Paediatrics, Notre Dame University, Perth, Australia.
South Australian Newborn Screening, SA Pathology at Womens and Children’s Hospital Adelaide, Australia.
Department of Genetics and Molecular Pathology, Adelaide, Australia.
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