Newborn Screening - for the health of your baby
- Newborn screening is available to all newborns and is designed to identify those at risk of rare, but serious medical conditions.
- Early detection and treatment of these conditions can prevent lifelong intellectual and developmental problems in most cases.
- Newborn screening is an extremely successful public health program conducted worldwide.
- Newborn screening helps to prevent unnecessary disability and is an important component of early child health care.
- Victoria's newborn screening program is fully funded by the Department of Health and is operated by Victorian Clinical Genetics Service using protocols approved by the Department.
The VCGS Victorian Newborn Screening (NBS) program celebrated its 50th Anniversary in February 2016. The program commenced in 1966 with testing for phenylketonuria in babies from some maternity hospitals and has now grown to test for 25 conditions with more than 99% of Victorian babies screened. To mark this occasion, a symposium and Grand Round was held on 10th February with invited local and interstate expert NBS speakers reflecting on the history, current practice and possible futures of this extremely successful public health program. The day was organised by VCGS and funded by the Department of Health and Human Services. Families who have benefited from NBS also participated in the day and provided a particularly poignant and moving account of their experiences. A commemorative booklet was also produced which is available for download here along with the speakers’ material.