Improve Identification & Data Collection for NAS

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Return to ZOOM MAP - Expand Steps to Minimize Opioid Use During Pregnancy or Pregnancy during Opioid Use


One of the biggest challenges of addressing NAS is that it is not consistently identified, and collection of data and reporting is inconsistent.

Key Information

Relevant Research

Impactful Federal, State, and Local Policies

Indiana State Department of Health

In 2014, because of the high rate of opioid prescriptions, the Indiana General Assembly charged the Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH) to: develop a standard clinical definition of NAS and a standardized process of identifying it, identify the resources hospitals need to do this, and then establish a voluntary pilot program with hospitals to implement this standardized NAS identification. As of 2016, 26 of 89 Indiana Birthing Hospitals are taking part in this pilot screening program . ISDH noted that universal screening in a non-punitive environment would allow us to understand the true prevalence of Perinatal Substance Use and NAS.[1]
The Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH) established a Task Force which defined a standard clinical definition of Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome
  • The infant must:
  • Be symptomatic
  • Have two or three consecutive modified Finnegan scores equal to or greater than a total of 24
  • And have one of the following:
    • A positive toxicology test OR
    • A maternal history with a positive verbal screen or toxicology test
ISDH NAS Task Force Final Report: NAS Identification Algorithm See Adopt Universal Screening for Pregnant Women for more information on standardized screening and testing for NAS

Available Tools and Resources


  1. [1]