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Garrett and Other Children Need You - Will You Help?

by Julie H. on Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Thank you to everyone who helped make CPR Education in Schools a success in Mississippi!  Now, it's time to shift gears and begin on our new campaign, pulse oximetry screening of newborns.

Pulse ox is quick and painless.  Before a baby leaves the hospital, the test helps identify heart defects, potentially saving the child's life.  Despite this, pulse ox is not required in Mississippi right now, allowing thousands of parents to take their child home without knowing the condition of their heart.

For example, meet Garrett, a very active 12 year old who lives in Mississippi.  He was a small heart born with a BIG challenge.  When he was several hours old, a nurse noticed that his breathing was labored; he was rushed to NICU and given a pulse ox screening.  It was determined that he was born with a coarctation of the aorta that was restricting the blood flow to the lower part of the body.  This is one lucky boy!  Had he been screened at delivery, his heart defect would have been caught and steps immediately would have been taken to correct this.

Efforts currently are underway in Mississippi to add pulse ox screening for critical congenital heart defects to the newborn screening panel that will allow newborns, like Garrett, to live longer, fuller lives.

To achieve this goal, we need you to CLICK HERE to invite your family and friends to join us in support of early detection and early prevention of critical congenital heart defects.  The more Mississippi voices we have advocating for pulse ox screening, the better our chances are that we'll protect small hearts facing BIG challenges.

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