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New Mandatory Test

Nearly one in one hundred babies have it. It can be deadly. We're talking about congenital heart defects. Tonight, eyewitness news reporter Kody Fisher has the story on a new mandatory test that could save your baby’s life.

Nearly one in one hundred babies have it.  It can be deadly.

We're talking about congenital heart defects.

Tonight, eyewitness news reporter Kody Fisher has the story on a new mandatory test that could save your baby’s life.

The test carries the somewhat imposing name pulse oximeter test, but what does it actually do?

It can catch infant heart defects earlier than ever before.

"It’s good to find out if there’s going to be any challenges along the way sooner than later. That way you know and they can take care of it before you even leave the hospital," said new parents Stacy and Brandon Rettig.

Before the legislation in August of 2013 this test was not mandatory.

The new parents that I talked to today say the mandatory test is welcome.

"I think the more testing that doesn’t hurt the baby and the testing doesn’t seem to hurt him or really bother him, the better," said Stacy and Brandon

To make sure the babies don’t have any type of heart defect, they use this machine. They attach these nodes to the babies right hand and then to their feet and it measures the amount of oxygen in the their blood and on a scale of a hundred, anything less than a 95 is a fail.

If the babies heart is working normally blood starts pumping from the heart.

"You know, goes to your lungs, picks up all the oxygen, comes back to your heart, goes back throughout the rest of the body and everybody is fine," said special care nurse Bonnie Evans.

According to experts for one in every one hundred babies it doesn’t work like that.

This test catches ninety percent of all congenital heart defects in babies.

That meant relief for Stacy and Brandon when they got the news about baby Eli’s test.

"Knowing that he's healthy and he's got the green light for everything, it’s great.”

It took so long for the test to be mandatory around the state because some smaller hospitals didn’t have the technology to make it implement it right away. 

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