Help newborns thrive


Nothing aches like having to watch a newborn child suffer. The pain that a parent, a sibling or even an attending physician experiences defies description.

When something simple can prevent that kind of suffering, it needs to happen. That is why I am encourage state Reps. Ken Roberson and Matt Hudson to support recent efforts to enact House Bill 81. This law would require that all newborns, prior to their release from a hospital, to undergo monitorial by pulse oximetry to screen for possible heart defects that might have gone undetected during other tests. But the bill is stuck, awaiting a hearing in Roberson’s Health Quality Committee.

Pulse oximetry is a simple, effective means of detecting oxygen levels of a patient’s blood supply. It made its debut in American hospitals in the early 1980s. Doctors have, for years, relied upon its readings to ascertain the health and integrity of their patients’ cardiovascular and pulmonary systems.

It is that “something simple” that will prevent the suffering of countless loved ones, for their newborn’s condition will be detected and treated and they will all live to build a happy, healthy future together.

I ask our local leaders use their power and influence to ensure that this life-saving measure for babies passes during this legislative session.

Diana Block, chair, Greater Miami/Fort Lauderdale American Heart Association, Aventura

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