Monday, January 30, 2012

Corbin's Law

Corbin Walker
Corbin was born with an undiagnosed CHD. He fought for 3 months before he sadly passed away. We are fighting for this bill in Corbin's memory.
To learn more about Corbin please visit his blog:
A while back I had wrote about pulse ox screening and how it can literally save lives. I have been working with 2 other moms along with the American Heart Association to pass a bill in WV that will make it mandatory for all newborns to be screened prior to being discharged from the hospital. Pulse Oximetry screening is simple, painless and very inexpensive. Have you ever gone into the hospital and they put that white clip on your finger? That is a pulse ox monitor. For a baby it looks like a small band-aid that is wrapped around their finger or foot.

Congenital heart defects (CHDs) are the world’s most common birth defect, occurring one in every 100 live births. Nearly 40,000 babies will be born this year with a CHD in the United States. Sadly, anywhere between 25-40% of CHDs go undiagnosed before or at birth – and those babies are sent home without necessary intervention. Many “common” murmurs are left for re-evaluation at the baby’s one-week well visit. In a short period of time, these undiagnosed and untreated defects will cause significant medical complications. In the worst cases, undiagnosed babies die. Research supports that early diagnosis of critical congenital heart defects leads to favorable outcomes in quality of life and survival rates. This is especially important in West Virginia since most families live 4 hours from the nearest Children’s Hospital. 

Currently, hospitals test for PKU, Down Syndrome and a host of other maladies, and yet, oddly enough, heart defects (the primary birth defect) is not routinely screened. 3 other states have already made it mandatory for newborns to be screened and we hope that West Virginia will be next.

I am really excited to say that this bill was introduced last Friday. We have 4 amazing sponsors (Delegates Hatfield, Poling, Brown and Staggers) backing us and hope to be able to pass this bill this year. We can't thank them enough for supporting this cause. The bill will be referred to the Health and Human Resources Committee and then to the Judiciary Committee.

WSAZ did a story about this bill on Friday. Thank you to the whole WSAZ team for helping us get the word out!

Just a few corrections about the story.
1. The black and white photo is not Jacob. The baby is Corbin
, son of Ruth Caruthers. Sadly Corbin passed away at 3 months old due to congenital heart defects. He was not prenatally diagnosed and we are fighting to get this bill passed in his memory. Ruth has been at the forefront of this campaign and I am so proud to be working with her, Michelle and with the American Heart Association to get this bill passed.
2. The bill has not passed in 20 states however we hope it is soon! 


We can't do this alone. If you live in West Virginia and you have not signed up already please go to and sign up to receive alerts letting you know when to contact your lawmakers. You will also receive updates about the bill's progress.

The first alert came out today. Please click the link below to contact your local lawmakers. It is easy! Just follow the link. There is a letter already written, you can add a personal story if you would like. By signing up You're The Cure will send the letter to your local lawmakers for you.


To learn more about Pulse Ox Advocacy and research, click here.


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