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Psychological impact of NBS for CF

Chudleigh, J. H. ORCID: 0000-0002-7334-8708 & Chinnery, H. (2020). Psychological impact of NBS for CF. International Journal of Neonatal Screening, 6(2), 27. doi: 10.3390/ijns6020027


Newborn screening for cystic fibrosis has resulted in diagnosis often before symptoms are recognised, leading to benefits including reduced disease severity, decreased burden of care, and lower costs. The psychological impact of this often unsought diagnosis on the parents of seemingly well children is less well understood. The time during which the screening result is communicated to families but before the confirmatory test results are available is recognised as a period of uncertainty and it is this uncertainty that can impact most on parents. Evidence suggests this may be mitigated against by ensuring the time between communication and confirmatory testing is minimized and health professionals involved in communicating positive newborn screening results and diagnostic results for cystic fibrosis to families are knowledgeable and able to provide appropriate reassurance. This is particularly important in the case of false positive results or when the child is given a Cystic Fibrosis Screen Positive, Inconclusive Diagnosis designation. However, to date, there are no formal mechanisms in place to support health professionals undertaking this challenging role, which would enable them to meet the expectations set out in specific guidance.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2020 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (
Publisher Keywords: newborn bloodspot screening; cystic fibrosis; psychological impact
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0321 Neuroscience. Biological psychiatry. Neuropsychiatry
R Medicine > RG Gynecology and obstetrics
R Medicine > RT Nursing
Departments: School of Health & Psychological Sciences > Nursing
Text - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons: Attribution International Public License 4.0.

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