WASHINGTON, June 28 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The state of Florida
will begin screening all newborns for cystic fibrosis (CF) starting July 1.
Florida joins 36 other states in the country, plus the District of
Columbia, to routinely screen for CF at birth.
"This is the right thing to do," said Peter Hodge, a Boca Raton, Fla.
father of two daughters with CF. Hodge's 14-year-old daughter, Olivia,
wasn't diagnosed with the disease until she was a teenager. "We wish our
daughter had been diagnosed at birth. That may have prevented some of the
health damage she's already suffered. I'm a big believer that knowledge is
power and that newborn screening gives families that power."
Cystic fibrosis is a life-threatening genetic disease that affects
30,000 children and adults in the United States. CF causes thick mucus to
build up in the lungs and other organs, causing life-threatening infections
and serious digestive complications.
Research shows that screening for CF will likely improve and extend the
lives of those born with the disease. Early diagnosis allows for affected
infants to begin therapeutic interventions immediately. These interventions
have been shown to help people with CF to maintain or improve lung
function, as well as increase life expectancy and reduce hospitalizations.
Early intervention has been shown to improve height, weight, and cognitive
function as well.
The CF Foundation strongly urges all states to implement comprehensive
programs for routine newborn screening for cystic fibrosis.
About the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation
The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation is the leading organization devoted to
curing and controlling cystic fibrosis. CF is a genetic disease that can
lead to life-threatening lung infections and digestive problems.
Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., the Foundation funds CF research, has more
than 80 chapter and branch offices throughout the country, and supports and
accredits a nationwide network of CF care centers, which provide vital
treatments and other CF resources to patients and families. For more
information, visit http://www.cff.org.
SOURCE Cystic Fibrosis Foundation