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No significant fiscal implication to the State is anticipated.
No fiscal implication to units of local government is anticipated.
The Department of State Health Services (DSHS) would be required to consult the Texas Medical Board in order to develop and publish congenital cytomegalovirus (CMV) informational materials for women who may become pregnant, expectant parents, and parents of infants. The publications would be required to be posted on the department's website.
In addition to publication materials, DSHS would be required to establish an educational outreach program to increase CMV awareness.
Birthing facilities would be required to conduct a CMV test if a newborn fails a newborn hearing screening, unless the parent declines the test. If an infant tests positive for CMV, the birthing facility would be required to provide the parents with three things:
CMV is a rare and mostly unheard of virus. If a woman contracts CMV while pregnant, the virus may be transmitted to the unborn infant, causing cognitive impairments, hearing loss, and even death. The purpose of this legislation is to increase educational awareness and increase CMV testing of infants at birthing centers.
Newborn babies already routinely undergo numerous tests to screen for obscure diseases or illnesses. By adding this testing, the state may be able to avoid later costs associated with untreated CMV such as the cost of specialized health and human services to persons who are deaf and/or have substantial cognitive impairments due to CMV.
Since SB 791 neither abridges nor advances our liberty principles, we remain neutral.