QUEBEC, June 8, 2017 /CNW Telbec/ - CF Canada is overjoyed with today's announcement by Quebec's Ministry of Health and Social Services that a screening program for CF in newborns will finally be implemented.
This is a huge win for the health and wellbeing of Quebec's children and is the culmination of years of work by CF Canada and the CF community in demonstrating how this will help Quebec babies with CF live longer and healthier lives.
"Since 2006, CF Canada has been calling for the implementation of a newborn screening program in Quebec. Now that this has been realized, our mission is to continue to support CF families and the 11 Quebec clinics they depend on for essential care," said Yannick Brouillette, Regional Executive Director, CF Canada Quebec. "We would like thank Minister Gaétan Barrette, as well as the entire CF community who have worked tirelessly in their efforts to improve the lives of Quebec newborns and their families, and will continue to do so until a cure is found."
Until today, Quebec was the only province in Canada and one of the rare places in the world that did not screen for CF in newborns. As a result of this announcement, children will be diagnosed earlier, preventing irreversible consequences such as growth retardation and an increased risk of contracting pulmonary infections. It will also avoid numerous emergency visits and hospitalization, alleviating strain on Quebec's healthcare system.
"My experience as a CF Clinic Medical Director shows me on a daily basis how important screening for CF in newborns is to improving babies' lives who are born with this dreadful disease. I am extremely pleased with this news and I hope that the program will be implemented quickly." adds Patrick Daigneault, MD, Pediatric respirologist at the Centre Mère-Enfant du CHUQ.
About cystic fibrosis
Cystic fibrosis is the most common fatal genetic disease affecting Canadian children and young adults. It is a multi-system disease that affects mainly the lungs and the digestive system. In the lungs, where the effects are most devastating, a build-up of thick mucus causes severe respiratory problems. Mucus also builds up in the digestive tract, making it difficult to digest and absorb nutrients from food. As improved therapies have helped to address the malnutrition issues, most deaths related to cystic fibrosis are now due to lung disease. There is no cure. In Canada on average, one baby in 3,500 suffers from cystic fibrosis while in Québec, the average is one baby in 2,500.
SOURCE Cystic Fibrosis Canada
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