An H.I.V. test is about to become as routine as an ultrasound for pregnant women in New Jersey.
Under a bill signed into law on Wednesday, all pregnant women in the state will be tested for the virus as part of their prenatal care unless they object. The law also requires testing for newborns if the H.I.V. status of the mother is unknown.
The new testing procedures are some of the most aggressive H.I.V.-prevention measures in the country for pregnant women and newborns, making New Jersey one of just a handful of states with laws requiring some form of prenatal testing.
According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, which researches health issues, a dozen states require doctors to offer H.I.V. tests to their pregnant patients. But just three — New York, Connecticut and Illinois — have mandatory testing for newborn babies. Four others — Michigan, Arkansas, Texas and Tennessee — have laws similar to New Jersey’s policy of testing pregnant women.