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NHS completes roll-out of antenatal screening for sickle cell

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The NHS formally announced last week that it has achieved 100% roll-out of its antenatal screening programme for sickle cell and thalassaemia.

As a result, all women receiving antenatal care in England will be offered screening for the genetic conditions – meeting a pledge first made in The NHS Plan in 2000.

Sickle cell screening for newborns is already established and identifies around 350 affected babies every year.

Dr Allison Streetly, director of the NHS Sickle Cell and Thalassaemia Screening Programme, said: ‘This is huge progress considering that less than 10 years ago screening was rarely available even in areas where sickle cell and thalassaemia were common.’


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