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Portland mom pushes state to screen newborns for debilitating virus

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House Bill 2754, introduced by Rep. Jeff Barker, would require medical centers to refer newborns who fail their hearing screenings to be tested for CMV.

A bill introduced in the 2017 legislative session would require hospitals and birthing centers to test newborns for a common virus that can cause Zika-like problems.

TRIBUNE FILE PHOTO - Northeast Portlander Amy Nelson is pushing for legislation that would mandate screenings for cytomegalovirus in newborns. The common virus can cause severe developmental problems in rare cases. Cytomegalovirus, called CMV, is a herpes-like virus that gives healthy adults and children a cold. But if a pregnant woman gets infected at the wrong time, she can pass it on to her fetus resulting in a small head, hearing loss or a spectrum of other neurological issues.



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