Information on the programme, including commissioning, quality assurance, education and training.
Public information about the newborn and infant physical examination (NIPE) screening programme is available on the NHS website.
Public Health England (PHE) is committed to reducing inequalities and variation in participation to help make sure everyone has fair and equal access to screening services.
PHE has also published information about patient confidentiality in population screening programmes.
NIPE screens newborn babies within 72 hours of birth, and then once again between 6 to 8 weeks. The second screen is needed because some conditions appear later on.
Conditions screened for
NIPE offers newborn screening to babies born in England for:
- congenital heart disease
- developmental dysplasia of the hip
- congenital cataracts
- cryptorchidism (undescended testes)
Screening tests for you and your baby sets out the screening tests used for NIPE.
NIPE is one of 11 NHS national population screening programmes available in England.
The UK National Screening Committee (UK NSC) makes recommendations to ministers in the 4 UK countries on all aspects of population screening. It ensures that screening provides more benefit than harm, at a reasonable cost to the NHS.
The UK NSC has made separate recommendations on each of the 4 NIPE conditions screened for:
- congenital heart disease screening in newborns
- developmental dislocation of the hip screening in newborns
- congenital cataract screening in newborns
- cryptorchidism screening in newborn boys
Data and intelligence
PHE collects routine data to monitor the uptake of NIPE screening.
Requests for screening data and research
All external requests for NIPE screening data need to be approved by the antenatal and newborn screening research advisory committee (RAC).
PHE also has terms of reference for NHS population screening programme RACs.
The guidelines on handling patient information explain how to use and safeguard personal data in screening.
PHE publishes the NIPE screening pathway requirements specification, which provides an overview of NIPE screening by describing what should happen at each stage of the end-to-end pathway. Providers and commissioners should use this to ensure high quality and consistent screening services.
NIPE standards are produced by the national screening programmes.
NIPE uses key performance indicators to monitor performance in relation to national standards.
The role of the screening quality assurance (QA) service is to:
- assess the quality of local screening programmes
- monitor compliance with standards
- support services with improving quality
- undertake regional level quality assurance visits
Health professionals should use the national QA team’s managing incidents guidance if issues are identified in relation to the screening pathway.
Workforce – education and training
Education and training resources, including e-learning, are available for healthcare professionals working in NIPE screening.
Keep up to date
Visit the Public Health England (PHE) screening blog to keep up to date with what is new in the programme, including the latest guidance and good practice. Register to receive blog updates direct to your inbox.
Follow PHE Screening on Twitter for information and news on all national screening programmes.
Contact the screening team
Population screening helpdesk
The helpdesk is not for media enquiries and does not have access to screening results. For queries about results, contact your GP or local screening service. Order screening leaflets at www.gov.uk/phe/screening-leaflets.