JEFFERSON CITY - Lawmakers met Wednesday in Jefferson City to discuss the presentation of the so-called "Chloe's Law" to the general assembly. The law would make it mandatory for all Missouri newborns to have a pulse oximetry test before they are discharged. The test is non-invasive and detects the most serious heart defects. It works much like a blood pressure test in that it winds around the infant's ankle and a computer monitors the levels of oxygen in the blood.
Kelly Manz is the champion behind the bill, and her daughter Chloe is the reason why.
"I don't even know why I felt that she wasn't breathing right," Manz said. "But I just felt like something was wrong."
After some persuassion, Manz got the nurses at her hospital to give Chloe the pulse oximetry test, and the results were shocking.
"They took her back there and the very first thing they did was a pulse oximetry screening and she scored very low," Manz said.
Doctors performed open heart surgery to correct the defect and now Chloe is a healthy two-and-a-half-year old.
Republican state representative Rick Brattin is the sponsor of the bill. He said that, despite disagreement among medical professionals, requiring the test just makes sense.
"I know a lot of the medical community says it's redundant," Brattin said. "And the government doesn't need to be involved, but at what expense do we not do something like this when it's so simple?"
The next step is for the bill to be attached as an amendment to a similar bill in either chamber.