NH child advocate to review response to drug-exposed infants

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — New Hampshire’s Office of the Child Advocate is reviewing how the state responds when babies are born exposed to opioids and other illegal substances.

Director Moira O’Neill said Tuesday that her office is planning a system-wide review of how the Division for Children, Youth and Families responds to such infants to be completed by July 1. Last year, the division assessed 466 babies and children who were born drug-exposed for abuse and neglect. Two children died last year, and three have died this year.

The opening of such a review does not indicate any confirmed violations but O’Neill said she wants to understand whether there are any trends among at-risk infants and whether the state’s child welfare and public systems have the resources they need.

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