In an attempt to upgrade the healthcare facilities in the state, Lucknow's King George's Medical University (KGMU) is all set to start a genetic diagnostic unit at the Queen Mary's Hospital soon. Notably, this facility will help detect genetic disorders early through the genomic testing of the foetus and newborn babies. Strikingly, this will be the second genetic diagnostic unit established in Uttar Pradesh.
Facility to help detect disorders in infants and new-born babies
After Sanjay Gandhi Postgraduate Institute of Medical Sciences (SGPGIMS), Lucknow's KGMU is all set to enhance its obstetrics and gynaecology department (OB-GYN) by adding a dedicated genetic diagnostic unit in its premises. Prof Mili Jain, a faculty member at the OB-GYN department and the head of this project, said, "We had submitted the proposal for the unit to the Central government in 2019. It has cleared scrutiny by the expert committee as well as the presentation stage. We are likely to get the final nod soon."
Reportedly, with the help of this unit, the doctors will be able to detect hereditary diseases in infants and go ahead with a better treatment option as well. Apart from this, the facility can also diagnose various disorders in foetuses at an early stage thereby assisting parents in their decision to either keep the pregnancy or terminate it.
Provision for counselling of parents included in the project
Highlighting the future plans, Prof. Jain added, "We are planning to screen thyroid, thalassemia, sickle cell anaemia, and red blood cell genetic disorders in babies. Thyroid issues will be screened in newborns, while unborn babies will be tested for thalassemia, sickle cell anaemia and other disorders.".
According to the officials, in case of detection of any complication within the first trimester, there's a provision for counselling of parents as well. Going by the words of the experts, this move will not only benefit babies and their parents but also decrease the load on the healthcare infrastructure of Uttar Pradesh.