Hometown Hero: A Mother's Crusade to Save Lives of Newborns

Published 04/03 2013 10:41PM

Updated 04/03 2013 10:45PM

LEE'S SUMMIT, Mo. - Kelly Manz is trying to pass a law to help detect heart defects in babies throughout Missouri.

Four-year-old Chloe Manz was born with an undetected heart defect and if it weren't for her mother's intuition, Chloe may not be alive today.

"I don't know what made me have this feeling that something was wrong in the hospital, and I can't duplicate it. I can't explain it."

Manz lives outside of Kansas City. Despite being told Chloe was fine after birth, she didn't think she was breathing correctly. After doing a lot of research, she insisted doctors run a pulse oximetry text on Chloe.

The screening found Chloe's oxygen levels were low and she underwent open heart surgery.

For four years, Kelly has been trying to push a measure called "Chloe's Law." It would make it mandatory for all hospitals in Missouri to do use a pulse oximtery screening on newborns.

The measure passed the Missouri Senate and Kelly hopes her efforts to require these tests will help save other newborns' lives.

"It's painless, it's fast, it's really easy to do," she says. "It doesn't cost much and it will ironically detect the most critical congenital heart defects, which ironically go undetected for several days after birth. The most life-threatening, critical ones won't show any symptoms right at birth. I just didn't want other families to have to go through that when it's such an easy screening to do and it gives you peace of mind."

Chloe's Law passed the state Senate but still must go through the House and be signed by the governor.

See Also:

Mercy President Says Passing "Chloe's Law" Will Save Lives

Senate Bill Would Require Blood Screening for Infants

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