Hong Kong News

Nonpartisan, Noncommercial, unconstrained.
Friday, Jun 09, 2023

1,000 Hong Kong couples with history of birth problems to be eligible for free tests

1,000 Hong Kong couples with history of birth problems to be eligible for free tests

New scheme aims to help more local couples who carry genetic diseases be aware of underlying conditions that may cause disabilities in newborns.

Hongkongers who have suffered recurrent miscarriages or fetal maldevelopment in their children will be among about 1,000 couples eligible for free screening and counselling in a new scheme set up by Chinese University and the Family Planning Association.

The programme, which opens for application from next Friday, aims to help more local couples who carry genetic diseases be aware of their underlying conditions that may cause disabilities in their children.

“We hope this programme will … bridge the service gap, especially for those underprivileged groups who cannot afford the services even if they are at high risk,” said Professor Leung Tak-yeung from the university’s department of obstetrics and gynaecology, which co-organises the scheme.

Dr Mona Lam Wai-cheung, executive director of the Family Planning Association.

The Family Planning Association will help process applications and carry out initial assessments in its clinics across the city.

The programme will run for three years and help about 1,000 couples a year.

Eligible couples must be Hong Kong ID card holders above the age of 18, who are planning a pregnancy and fulfil one of six criteria. They include experience of at least two miscarriages or repeated fetal malformations or disabilities; previous unexplained fetal or neonatal conditions; and marriage involving first or second-degree relatives.

The other three criteria are a family history of intellectual disabilities, miscarriage or malformation; having high-risk factors for genetic disorders; and belonging to an ethnic group known to be susceptible to monogenic diseases.

Couples can be referred by healthcare professionals to join the free screening or file applications on the association’s website.

Leung said global data indicated that out of every 1,000 couples, two to three would be asymptomatic carriers of genetic diseases that could lead to adverse pregnancy outcomes, such as stillbirths and thalassaemia or spinal muscular atrophy in the newborns.

Ordinary screening can only be done during pregnancy or after a baby is born, and can only detect some genetic conditions, such as Down’s syndrome and metabolic disorders.

But Chinese University has developed a technology that can detect about 300 mutations in a person’s DNA through an all-in-one blood test. Low-risk couples can also register for the test for about HK$4,000 (US$509).

The university’s clinical history showed the test, together with in vitro fertilisation technology, could help couples with repeated miscarriages conceive children who are asymptomatic despite still being carriers of genetic conditions.

Leung also said the scheme aimed to offer new information on the status of local carriers and provide healthcare professionals with training to cope with the increasing demand for preconception genetic counselling services.

AI Disclaimer: An advanced artificial intelligence (AI) system generated the content of this page on its own. This innovative technology conducts extensive research from a variety of reliable sources, performs rigorous fact-checking and verification, cleans up and balances biased or manipulated content, and presents a minimal factual summary that is just enough yet essential for you to function as an informed and educated citizen. Please keep in mind, however, that this system is an evolving technology, and as a result, the article may contain accidental inaccuracies or errors. We urge you to help us improve our site by reporting any inaccuracies you find using the "Contact Us" link at the bottom of this page. Your helpful feedback helps us improve our system and deliver more precise content. When you find an article of interest here, please look for the full and extensive coverage of this topic in traditional news sources, as they are written by professional journalists that we try to support, not replace. We appreciate your understanding and assistance.

Related Articles

Hong Kong News
The Fed fixing the economy
Corporations standing up for “LGDP-LGT-LBG-LGBTQ2+ kids” during ‘Pride Month’ be like:
A Major Ukrainian Hydroelectric Dam BLOWN UP
US and European Intelligence Agencies Uncover Evidence of Ukrainian Role in Terror Attack on Nord Stream Pipeline
Photos and videos of Hunter Biden with underage minors have been released.
The driver has been described by authorities as a 21-year-old woman from Tallahassee
Joe Biden falls at the Air Force Graduation
America's Got Talent…
Elon Musk has been showered with praise by the Chinese public during his trip to China
Nvidia Joins Tech Giants as First Chipmaker to Reach $1 Trillion Valuation
Drone Attack on Moscow's Wealthiest Neighborhoods Suspected to be Launched by Ukraine
AI ‘extinction’ should be same priority as nuclear war – experts
Chinese fighter jet buzzes U.S. Air Force spy plane over South China Sea
Prominent Hacker Forum RaidForums Suffers Substantial Data Breach
Nvidia CEO Huang says firms, individuals without AI expertise will be left behind
WPP Revolutionizes Advertising with NVIDIA's AI Powerhouse
Two US Employees Fired For Chasing Robbers Out Of Store As They Broke ''Company Policy''
Pfizer, the EU, and disappearing ink - Smoke, Mirrors, and the Billion-Dose Pfizer Vaccine Deal: EU's 'Open Secret
The Sussexes' Royal Rebound: Could Harry and Meghan Markle Return to the UK?
A provocative study suggests: Left-Wing Extremism and its Unsettling Connection to Psychopathy and Narcissism
Neuralink Receives FDA Approval for First-in-Human Clinical Study
Ukrainian Intelligence Official Admits to Assassination Attempts on Putin
WATCH THIS: democracy in Russia is so bad!
Ed Davey: It is possible for a woman to have a penis
Bernard Arnault Loses $11.2 Billion in One Day as Investors Fear Slowdown in US Growth Will Reduce Demand for Luxury Products
Russian’s Wagner Group leader: “I am not a chef, I am a butcher. Russia is in danger of a revolution like in 1917.”
TikTok Sues Montana Over Law Banning the App
Ron DeSantis Jumps Into 2024 Presidential Race, Setting Up Showdown With Trump
Steve Jobs introducing Apple's iPhone, exactly 16 years ago.
Banking Behemoth vs Ex-Boss: The PMorgan-Epstein Entanglement
China overtakes Japan as world's top car exporter
Talks between US House Republicans and President Biden's Democratic administration on raising the federal government's $31.4tn debt ceiling have paused
Biden Administration Eyeing High-Profile Visits to China: The Biden Administration is heating things up by looking into setting up a series of top-level visits to Beijing by top officials in the coming months
New evidence in special counsel probe may undercut Trump’s claim documents he took were automatically declassified
A French court of appeals confirmed former President Nicolas Sarkozy's three-year jail term for corruption and influence peddling
Debt Ceiling Crises Have Unleashed Political Chaos
Weibao Wang, a former software engineer at Apple, was charged with stealing trade secrets related to autonomous systems, including self-driving cars
Mobile phone giant Vodafone to cut 11,000 jobs globally over three years as new boss says its performance not good enough
Elon Musk compares George Soros to Magneto, the supervillain from the Marvel Comics series.
Warren Buffett Sells TSMC Shares Over Concerns About Taiwan's Stability
New Study Finds That Secondary Bacterial Pneumonia Is a Major Cause of Death in COVID-19 Patients Who Require Ventilator Assistance
The official tapes of Trump's deposition in the E. Jean Carroll battery (rape) and defamation case have been released.
King Charles III being crowned.
Newly released video of Donald Trump’s rape trial deposition:
Video: Ukraine MP Punches Russian Representative At Global Meet
El Paso mayor has declared a state of emergency
Russia accused Ukraine of attacking the Kremlin with drones in an attempt to kill Putin
Dutch court orders man who fathered 550 kids to stop donating sperm
Kim Kardashian Lookalike Christina Ashten Dies Of Cardiac Arrest, Hours After Plastic Surgery
Samsung has banned employees from using generative AI services such as ChatGPT