Dear Colleague: Change to the Requirement for Providing Vitamin K to Newborn Infants

April 4, 2014

RE: Change to the requirement for providing Vitamin K to newborn infants

Dear Colleague:

The purpose of this letter is to inform you of recently adopted changes to regulations regarding providing vitamin K to newborn infants. The revised regulation expands the time window for the administration of vitamin K to newborn infants to within six hours of birth. This time frame is consistent with the most recent 2012 American Academy of Pediatrics Policy Statement.[1] Increasing exclusive breastfeeding is a public health priority of the New York State Department of Health. Expanding the time frame for administration of vitamin K should promote and support early initiation and exclusive breastfeeding during the birth hospitalization.

Section 12.3 of Title 10 of the New York Codes, Rules and Regulations (NYCRR) has been amended to read:

Precautions to be observed for the prevention of hemorrhagic diseases and coagulation disorders of the newborn and infants related to vitamin K deficiency.

It shall be the duty of the attending physician, licensed midwife, registered professional nurse or other licensed medical professional attending the newborn to assure administration of a single intramuscular dose of 0.5 - 1.0 mg of vitamin K1 oxide (phytonadione) within six hours of birth in accordance with current standards of medical care.

This change is effective June 9, 2014.

Of note, there has been no change to Section 12.2 of Title 10 of NYCRR, concerning the administration of prophylactic agents to prevent conjunctivitis in newborn infants.

If you have any questions, please email:


  • Barbara A. Dennison, M.D.
    Director, Policy and Research
    Diagnostic & Treatment Centers
    Division of Chronic Disease Prevention
  • Marilyn A. Kacica, MD, MPH
    Medical Director
  • Ruth W. Leslie
    Director, Division of Hospitals & Translation Unit
    Division of Family Health
    Office of Health Systems Management
  1. [1]American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP): Policy Statement: Breastfeeding and the Use of Human Milk. Pediatrics 2012; 129:e827.