Ohio adds immune disorder to newborn testing

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Ohio health authorities have added an immune disorder to the state’s newborn screenings.

The Ohio Department of Health says screening began July 29 for severe combined immunodeficiency disorder. The screening is done with specimens already collected for testing for 35 other disorders.

What is known as SCID is a set of genetic disorders causing defects in the immune system. It occurs in about one in every 40,000 newborns. The department says if not treated, it can be fatal in the first year of life. The state projects the screening will identify about three infants with the disorder a year.

Ohio’s newborn screening program began in 1964. The blood is drawn with a heel stick, and testing can identify disorders that require early attention.

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