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Health Indicator Report of Congenital Cytomegalovirus Infection and Hearing Loss

Every year, more than 40,000 women in the U.S. experience CMV infection during pregnancy. 1 in 200 babies is born with congenital CMV in America 1 in every 5 children born with CMV manifests birth defects and/or experiences developmental disabilities, including hearing loss. Additionally, congenital CMV infection is identified as one of the leading causes of non-genetic hearing loss with 15 - 20% of bilateral, sensorineural hearing loss. CMV testing is time-sensitive and the urine or saliva sample must be taken before the baby is 21 days old to be accurate for the detection of congenital CMV infection. This is because the incubation period for CMV is 21 days. Hence, a positive test after 21 days of age cannot differentiate between an accquired and congenitial infection.

CMV Testing After Failed Newborn Hearing Screening Percentage of infants receiving CMV testing after failing newborn hearing screening 2014-2020


The data represented in the graphs above comprises in-hospital and out-of-hospital births. Failing newborn hearing screening: babies who fail two newborn hearing screenings (inpatient and outpatient) or if the baby is screened for the first time at 14 days of age or older and fails.

Data Source

The Utah Department of Health


Cytomegalovirus, or CMV, is the most common infectious cause of birth defects in the United States. Infants with congenital CMV infection can potentially develop progressive long-term health problems, such as sensorineural hearing loss. Hearing loss may progress from mild to profound during the first two years of life, which is a critical period for language learning. Over time, hearing loss can affect a child's ability to develop communication, language, and social skills. Screening infants before 21 days of life for CMV after failing newborn hearing screening has been mandated in Utah since July 2013.


1.1 Total number of infants receiving CMV testing after failing newborn hearing screening each year 1.2 Total number of Infants testing positive for CMV after failing the newborn hearing screening


1.1 Total number of infants failing newborn hearing screening each year 1.2 Total number of infants receiving CMV testing after failing newborn hearing screening each year

How Are We Doing?

The Utah Early Hearing Detection and Intervention (EHDI) Program within the Utah Department of Health oversees the Cytomegalovirus (CMV) Public Health Initiative in Utah. The percentage of eligible babies receiving CMV testing has steadily increased from 38% in 2013 to 84% in 2020.

How Do We Compare With the U.S.?

Utah is the only state in the US that mandates CMV testing after failing the newborn hearing screening.

What Is Being Done?

The mission of the Utah Cytomegalovirus Public Education and Testing Program is to educate women of childbearing age and community stakeholders on the risks of Cytomegalovirus (CMV) during pregnancy; and to test eligible infants for the presence of congenital CMV that allows for early detection and intervention in an effort to reduce the effects of CMV. H.B. 81 (2013 General Session) UCA 26-10-10, whose Chief Sponsor was Representative Ronda Rudd Menlove, went into effect on July 1, 2013. This law directs medical practitioners to test infants who fail newborn hearing screening for congenital CMV and inform the parents about the possible birth defects that CMV can cause.
Page Content Updated On 01/05/2021, Published on 03/03/2022
The information provided above is from the Department of Health's Center for Health Data IBIS-PH web site ( The information published on this website may be reproduced without permission. Please use the following citation: " Retrieved Sun, 10 December 2023 1:25:05 from Department of Health, Center for Health Data, Indicator-Based Information System for Public Health Web site: ".

Content updated: Thu, 3 Mar 2022 18:57:44 MST