Having a baby is an exciting time. Whether you are a first time mother or adding to your family, your experience is personal and unique.
Some of the screening tests offered can only be performed in early pregnancy, so it is important that you contact maternity services as soon as you have confirmed your pregnancy to ensure you can be offered all available screening tests.
During your first booking appointment your community midwife will discuss and offer you a range of screening tests, including blood tests and ultrasound baby scans. These are designed to check your health and your baby’s health and development.
Screening is offered to all pregnant women for:
Sickle Cell and Thalassemia
These are genetic conditions passed down through families. If two people who are carriers have a baby together, there is an increased risk that their baby could inherit a haemoglobin disorder. It is also offered to the baby's biological father if the mother is found to be a carrier of or have a sickle cell or thalassemia condition.
The scan between 18 weeks and 20+6 weeks looks at your baby in detail to look at all its organs and check it is developing properly rather than whether you are expecting a boy or a girl. There is a list of conditions that sonographers look for some are easy to see but others are more difficult and may not be seen at all.
Choosing whether or not to have these screening tests is an important decision. You do not have to have any tests offered, however to enable you to make a decision it is important that you understand the information given and the purpose of the tests.
- Further information on Antenatal and Newborn screening can be found in the NHS Screening Programmes guide:
Screening tests for you and your baby.
It is also available to download in the following languages via the same link: Arabic, Bengali, Chinese (simplified), French, Latvian, Lithuanian, Polish, Portuguese, Punjabi, Romanian, Somali, Urdu.
- Population screening timeline
- The Antenatal Results and Choices (ARC) national charity offers non directive information and support to parents going through antenatal screening and testing. Their helpline number is 02076 310285.
- Positive About Down Syndrome
- You may wish to read the Down’s Syndrome Pathway for Hull and East Yorkshire.
- SOFT-UK support organisation for Trisomy 13 and Trisomy 18.
- Early pregnancy scan: brief description
- Fetal anomaly screening: 20-week scan
To book an appointment
I have a question
- You can speak to your Community Midwife at your booking appointment.
- Our Antenatal and Newborn Screening Coordinator can be contacted on 01482 382737 (weekdays only from 8.00am – 4.00pm).