Skip to main content Skip to office menu Skip to footer
Capital IconMinnesota Legislature

Newborn screening bill

Published (5/16/2008)
By Craig Green
Share on: 

Newborns in Minnesota are screened for 53 rare and serious medical conditions.

A plan to clarify what testing can be done, what options the parents have and other changes to newborn screening laws may soon become law.

Sponsored by Rep. Paul Thissen (DFL-Mpls) and Sen. Ann Lynch (DFL-Rochester), HF3438/SF3138* would require that prior to a blood sample being taken from a newborn, parents or the legal guardian would be told that the sample could be used to test for hereditary and congenital disorders, held at the Health Department for at least two years and possibly used for research.

When a conference committee report was presented on the House floor May 15, there was an additional provision requiring the person who performs the test to document that the parents or legal guardians have received the information and had an opportunity to ask questions.

Already passed by the Senate earlier in the day 51-12, the bill was approved by the House 103-29. It now awaits action by the governor.

Under the bill, parents would be told the benefits and consequences of declining the tests, and given the option to refuse either testing, storage, research or all. Additionally, the department would have to provide a report to the Legislature on the newborn screening process by Jan. 15, 2009.

The proposal came about because of a recent statute requiring written consent for all genetic material collection. One can opt into the program only with written consent. Under the newborn screening proposal, testing would be done unless the parents opt-out.

Session Weekly More...

Session Weekly Home

Related Stories

At Issue: On the forefront
Minnesota looks to set the national stage for health care reform
(view full story) Published 5/30/2008

At Issue: Health reform still in play
Governor nixes months of work; supporters remain optimistic
(view full story) Published 5/16/2008

Minnesota Index
Figures and statistics on elder Minnesotans
(view full story) Published 5/2/2008

At Issue: Regulating patient safety
Hospitals sometimes choose between more nurses or rationing care
(view full story) Published 4/25/2008

At Issue: Hungry for help
Food shelf needs are growing across state
(view full story) Published 4/18/2008

At Issue: No rooms for those in crisis
Psychiatric beds are full, but solutions are as complex as the problem
(view full story) Published 3/28/2008

At Issue: An umbrella of coverage
A year in the making, health care proposal lays out an aggressive timeline
(view full story) Published 3/21/2008

At Issue: Primary care your life depends on it
A system overhaul is needed, working on a solution
(view full story) Published 3/7/2008

Minnesota Index
Figures and statistics on health insurance in Minnesota
(view full story) Published 2/29/2008