State Law Helps Save Lives Of Babies

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Every newborn in Tennessee is now required to have their oxygen level tested before they leave the hospital. Doctors found that a low oxygen level can signal a heart defect that may have otherwise gone undetected.

Dr. William Walsh developed the idea and helped create the law. 

"We'd do a physical exam we'd listen and they wouldn't have a murmur we'd think they look ok and go home and get very sick from chd and some would die in first days of life," said Walsh.

That was before oxygen tests were mandatory. Doctors say it can't find all heart defects but it will find some.

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