The SAFE Test
St George’s Antenatal Fetal Evaluation – Non invasive prenatal testing (NIPT)
Why have the SAFE test? As part of the national screening pathway women are offered the ‘combined test’ in the first trimester of pregnancy. This evaluates hormonal blood levels with ultrasound findings to assess the chance of chromosomal or structural anomalies. Although the range of conditions that can be detected by this method is broader than the number of conditions identified by the SAFE test, the SAFE test has a higher detection rate for Down’s, Patau’s and Edward’s syndrome.
Non-Invasive Prenatal Testing (NIPT) is a blood test taken from the mother in pregnancy, that uses cutting edge DNA technology to evaluate whether a baby has a high chance of a certain chromosomal condition.
The St George’s Antenatal Fetal Evaluation (SAFE) test is a NIPT test is a screening test for Down’s, Edwards’ and Patau’s syndromes only, in line with UK National Screening Committee (UKNSC) recommendations. The test is performed by taking a small sample of the mother’s blood. which is then sent to the NHS laboratory at St George’s Hospital for assessment. The results are typically available within 7 calendar days from sample receipt.