Non Invasive Prenatal Test (NIPT) to become part of NHS fetal screening programme

Non Invasive Prenatal Test (NIPT) to become part of NHS fetal screening programme

It has been announced today that the UK Screening Committee has recommended that the new Non Invasive Prenatal Test (NIPT) is rolled out as part of the NHS Fetal Anomaly Screening Programme.

This means that in addition to current screening tests expectant families will also be offered a non-invasive test to determine the likelihood of their baby having Down syndrome, Edward’s syndrome or Patau’s syndrome. The test is cited as being 98% accurate and will reduce the number of people who will then opt for the invasive, amniocentesis testing. This is hoped to reduce the number of miscarriages that occur as a result of amniocentesis testing but is likely to increase the number of terminations of pregnancy where one of the above conditions is diagnosed, as more people are expected to opt for the non-invasive testing.

This is clearly a hugely sensitive, complex and emotive issue and we just want to reassure people that Sunshine and Smiles will continue to support families pre natally, post natally and at the different stages of their journey as children and young people grow and develop; in the way that is best for each individual family and that promotes inclusion and aspiration.

We believe passionately in balanced, accurate and up to date information and will be continuing with our work alongside health professionals such as midwives, screening co-ordinators, paediatricians, nurses and more to ensure they in turn share news and give information that is sensitive, informed and allows families to continue their own, unique journey with ongoing support and care.

There are many wider debates to be had on this issue which I am sure we will all be part of, and affected by, in days, weeks, months and years to come … there are no easy solutions and no universal right or wrong…

‘Everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about. Be kind. Always….’

For further information or to talk to someone at Sunshine and Smiles please contact 07902 054355 or email hello@sunshineandsmiles.org.uk