The NHS Newborn and Infant Physical Examination (NIPE) Screening Programme offers parents of babies in England a newborn physical examination for their child shortly after birth (ideally within 72 hours) and an infant physical examination at 6 to 8 weeks old. These examinations screen for conditions relating to the eyes, heart, hips and (in boys) testes.
PHE Screening has now published an updated version of the newborn and infant physical examination programme handbook. It includes information and clinical guidance to assist NIPE practitioners. Screen positive pathways have also been published to support the clinical pathway guidance.
Summary of changes
The main changes include:
- clarification of the term ‘too young for NIPE newborn screening’
- update of the NIPE hip standards, which were implemented across England on 1 April 2021
- addition of the management and referral times of screen positive hip examination and clarification on screen positive criteria
- addition of the management and referral times of screen positive eye examination and screen positive criteria, including images of congenital cataracts and red reflexes
- new pathways for all NIPE screen positive screening examinations (eyes, heart, hips and testes), in visual and accessible text formats
- clarification of the management of breech presentation
- further guidance on NIPE practitioner education and training and maintenance of competency for NIPE screening examination
The handbook has been reviewed by the NIPE clinical advisory group members and clinical specialist to ensure the content is accurate and reflects current and recommended practice.
It’s important the NHS NIPE Screening Programme meets the needs of practitioners. Feedback and queries received through the NIPE advisory group, the SMaRT4NIPE users, Royal Colleges, clinical experts, SQAS and the PHE screening helpdesk is extremely useful to us, so please continue to share your thoughts and comments.
We hope the handbook and pathways will be useful and well-used.
PHE Screening blog
The PHE Screening blog provides up to date news from all NHS screening programmes. You can register to receive updates direct to your inbox, so there’s no need to keep checking for new blogs. If you have any questions about this blog article, or about population screening in England, please contact the PHE screening helpdesk.