Newborn screening

Newborn screening is a process where babies are screened five days after birth. This is to check for conditions that may not show signs or symptoms in the neonatal period. This allows the child to receive treatment as soon as possible, therefore giving them the best start in life. We screen all babies across the West Midlands at the Children's Hospital, this is where the newborn screening nurse specialists are also based.

The newborn screening service also extends to midwives, health visitors and nurses. They are offered annual training to keep their skills updated, particularly around sample technique and information about the conditions. Conditions which can be picked up from newborn screening include:

And six inherited metabolic conditions:

  • Phenylketonuria (PKU)
  • Medium-chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase deficiency (MCAD)
  • Maple syrup urine disease (MSUD)
  • Isovaleric acidaemia (IVA)
  • Glutaric aciduria type 1 (GA1)
  • Homocystinuria (HCU)