U.S. international efforts on critical congenital heart disease screening: can we have a uniform recommendation for Europe?

Early Hum Dev. 2014 Sep;90 Suppl 2:S11-4. doi: 10.1016/S0378-3782(14)50004-7.


An estimated 90% of births or more in the United States will be screened for critical congenital heart disease (CCHD) by the end of 2014. Europe has made less progress despite providing the population-based studies that were critical in driving support for efforts within the United States. Congenital Heart Disease (CHD) advocacy groups, investigators in screening for CCHD and international health organizations have been meeting with health care providers and government officials on a country by country basis. Countries that are implementing or have pilot projects have been identified to track global implementation. The Nordic countries, the United States, Switzerland and the United Arab Emirates are closest to universal screening for CCHD in newborns. Significant pilot projects tailored to unique care delivery systems screen through the use of midwives in the Netherlands, on maternity wards in the United Kingdom and while developing newborn care infrastructure in China. In Africa, South and Central America, individual countries are in the early stages of organization. Screening for CCHD is spreading across the globe. Early recognition has the ability to improve care in countries providing CHD treatment and prepare parents for adverse events in countries where care is not accessible. Impact of screening in regions with less access to intervention will be important to track.

Keywords: CCHD; Congenital heart disease; Neonate; Pulse oxymetry; Screening.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Critical Illness
  • Europe
  • Guidelines as Topic*
  • Heart Defects, Congenital / diagnosis*
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Mass Screening / methods
  • Mass Screening / standards*
  • Mass Screening / statistics & numerical data
  • Prenatal Diagnosis / methods
  • Prenatal Diagnosis / standards*
  • Prenatal Diagnosis / statistics & numerical data
  • United States