Critical Congenital Heart Disease (CCHD)

Critical congenital heart disease (CCHD) represents a group of heart defects that cause serious, life-threatening symptoms and requires intervention within the first days or first year of life. CCHD is one of the leading causes of death in infants less than one-year-old. CDC reports that about one in four babies born with a heart defect has a critical congenital heart defect.

CCHD is often treatable if detected early. It can include abnormalities in the heart's rhythm and a wide array of structural heart problems. Baby's First Test provides more information about CCHD. 
Pulse oximeter testing on a baby's ankle to screen for critical congenital heart disease (CCHD).
Beginning in September 2014, reporting confirmed CCHD cases is mandatory in Texas. House Bill 740, 83rd Legislature Regular Session, 2013, added this condition to the required Texas newborn screening panel. The Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) has developed Texas Administrative Code rules for CCHD screening located in Chapter 37 §37.75 – 37.79 (PDF).

CCHD Toolkit

Birthing facilities, hospitals, and physicians can use the CCHD toolkit to assist with implementing CCHD screening. The toolkit was developed through the Texas Pulse Oximetry Project with support from DSHS. It provides educational and technical information on screening for CCHD, including the screening algorithm card, brochures, and other information for physicians and nurses. 

Required Reporting Form 

Newborn screening for CCHD requires that confirmed cases be reported to DSHS. Use the CCHD Reporting Form to document confirmed cases. Completed forms can be faxed or mailed as follows: 

FAX to: 
Fax Number: 512-206-3909
Attention: CCHD Program 

MAIL to: 
Attention: CCHD Program 
Texas Department of State Health Services
Newborn Screening Unit 
P.O. Box 149347, MC 1918 
Austin, TX 78714-9347 

Free Continuing Education Accredited CCHD Course  

The Texas Health Steps' online program provides a module on critical congenital heart disease. Health care providers learn about performing state-mandated newborn screening for critical congenital heart disease (CCHD), evaluating results, and providing appropriate follow-up. Free continuing education credit is provided after module and test completion.

Frequently Asked Questions

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