SB 791

84(R) - 2015
Senate Health & Human Services
Senate Health & Human Services
Department of Health

Vote Recommendation

  • Neutral
  • Neutral
  • Neutral
  • Neutral
  • Neutral


Lois Kolkhorst

Bill Caption

Relating to testing for and education about congenital cytomegalovirus in infants.

Fiscal Notes

No significant fiscal implication to the State is anticipated.

No fiscal implication to units of local government is anticipated.

Bill Analysis

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:

  1. the results of the test;
  2. information on the potential effects of CMV and the treatment options available; and
  3. information that directs parents to coordinate follow-up care with the infant's physician or health care provider.

Vote Recommendation Notes

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.