Newborn babies from the Maritime Provinces will soon benefit from earlier detection and treatment for severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) disorder.
All babies born in the Maritime Provinces have access to newborn screening and are screened for a number of serious, but treatable disorders, including metabolic, endocrine, and blood disorders. On March 21, 2016, SCID will be added to our screening panel.
SCID is a disorder that leads to a deficiency or dysfunction of the baby’s immune system. Babies with SCID are not able to fight off common infections, such as a cold, flu, or pneumonia so these infections can be life‐threatening. Early identification of SCID through newborn screening and treatment for SCID is critical to prevent adverse outcomes and lead to longer, healthier lives, improved quality of life, and reductions in the number of Emergency Room visits and hospitalizations.
The Maritime Newborn Screening Program is the second in Canada to provide this screening.
Newborn screening is part of the Provincial Government’s broader initiative to ensure families will have better access to the supports they need for children to get a strong start in life. Currently, the IWK Health Centre does newborn screening for all babies born in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Prince Edward Island.
For more information about Newborn Screening, including information sheets on SCID, visit www.maritimenewbornscreening.ca. Questions can be directed to the Maritime Newborn Screening Program, Clinical Coordinator at 902-470-7560.
IWK Communications & Public Affairs