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Boback’s Pulse Oximetry Testing Bill Headed to Governor’s Desk
HARRISBURG – The state House voted Monday to approve changes to House Bill 1420, which would require pulse oximetry testing for newborns. The test is one of the best ways of detecting congenital heart defects. The bill was authored by Rep. Karen Boback (R-Columbia/Luzerne/Wyoming) and, because the Senate passed an amended bill, it needed to be reviewed by the House before going to Gov. Tom Corbett’s desk for his signature.

“States across the country have mandated this very inexpensive but lifesaving screening test,” Boback said. “This is one of the best ways to catch congenital heart defects and to give children born with defects the best start to life.”

Pulse oximetry is a blood oxygen test that can detect congenital heart defects or CHD. Recent studies have shown that this testing, with wide use, could detect 90 percent of congenital heart defects. Many birthing facilities already offer the testing, but it would become mandatory under this legislation. The legislation is supported by the American Heart Association.

“Over the course of the last several months, I’ve met with the families of children whose lives have been saved as a result of this screening,” Boback added. “After seeing firsthand the good this screening can do, I am even more grateful to my colleagues in the House and Senate for their support of this legislation.”

For more legislative updates, go to

Representative Karen Boback
117th District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Media Contact: Nick Ruffner
717.260.6258 /
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