Did you know that Governor Tom Corbett signed into law last month the Down Syndrome Prenatal Education Act (Chloe’s Law)? Originally introduced as H.B. 2111 and co-sponsored by local representatives including Representative Bizzarro and Representative Rapp, this legislation requires healthcare practitioners to provide current information to women who receive a prenatal diagnosis of Down Syndrome. We have made enormous strides in our knowledge and understanding of Down Syndrome these past 10 years, so it is essential that parents have access to resources that are evidence based. It was not that long ago that the life expectancy for persons with Down Syndrome was only in their mid-20s. Today, I know many adults with Down Syndrome in their 40s and 50s.
For those not familiar with Down Syndrome, it occurs when an individual has a partial or full copy of chromosome 21. One in every 691 babies in the United States is born with Down Syndrome. Over 400,000 persons are living with Down Syndrome in the United States. Dr. Kishore Vellody, medical director of the Down Syndrome Center at the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh, noted that the termination of pregnancy rates in the United States range from 60 – 90% when a prenatal diagnosis of Down Syndrome is made.
The Department of Health is charged with updating and maintaining the informational publications on its website. For further information on Down Syndrome can be secured through:
- Down Syndrome Center at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC
- Down Syndrome Association of Pittsburgh
- National Down Syndrome Society
- Down Syndrome Group of Erie County Pennsylvania
This powerful video answers one mom’s question when her baby was diagnosed with Down Syndrome.