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Colleen's Story Made A Difference

Sharing our stories can make a difference in the lives of others.

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I gave birth to my second child, Samantha, in 1995. Days after being born Samantha was sent home from the hospital, and her heart condition went undetected. Within a week after being home Samantha showed signs of something very wrong. Samantha was born with a congenital heart defect, she would pass away 21 days after her birth.

In 1995, critical congenital heart defect screening for newborn infants, using a pulse oximetry test, was not required in New Hampshire. Having this test in place when Samantha was born would have allowed for prompt critical care and the possibility of a very different outcome. When NH Legislators considered a bill in 2012 to make this test a requirement for all hospitals and birthing centers, I shared my story with my lawmakers, in hopes they would pass the bill to save other families from such a heartbreaking loss. NH did pass the requirement, one of the first such laws in the country. As a You’re The Cure advocate our voices do get heard and we can make a difference in the lives of our families, friends and neighbors.

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