Prenatal screening

You can have your baby examined for a range of abnormalities. These tests are called prenatal screening.

There are different kinds of tests. The NIPT, 13 week- and 20 week ultrasound. Below we briefly explain the different types of tests. We will provide you with more information about these screening options during your appointments at the practice. It is important that you prepare yourself well by reading all relevant information before discussing these tests with the midwife. 

These examinations are optional, to either have them or not are entirely your decision.

Testing for Down-, Edwards-, and Patau’s syndrome (NIPT)

As a pregnant woman in the Netherlands you have the option of having your baby tested (screening) for the likelihood of Down-, Edwards- of Patau’s syndrome. This screening is done via the NIPT method. This test is performed between 11-14 weeks of pregnancy. We will share more information about this during your appointments at the practice.

You may find it helpful to complete the ‘keuzehulp Bewust Kiezen’ . Also please read the information about other chromosomal abnormalities.

The NIPT is covered by your basic health insurance. 

NIPT blood test locations

For the NIPT you have to make an appointment at one of the Saltro locations.  You can have the NIPT blood test at the following locations in Utrecht: 

  • Saltro Location Bosboomstraat, Bosboomstraat 1G, Utrecht: Mo to Fri 7:00 AM – 5.00 PM.
  • Saltro Location Werradreef, Werradreef 2, Utrecht: Mo to Fri 7:00 AM – 6:00 PM.


13 week ultrasound

The 13 week ultrasound is a medical examination that can be performed by a sonographer if you are between 12 ½ and 14 ½ weeks pregnant.

With the 13-week ultrasound you can have your baby screened early on in the pregnancy for the possibility of serious physical abnormalities. During this ultrasound, the sonographer examines the baby’s skull, heart, abdomen, limbs, spine, nuchal fold and the placenta. The sonographer also checks whether the amniotic fluid is normal. The baby’s sex is NOT checked. There is no fee payable for this ultrasound.

The brochure ‘13 and 20 week ultrasound’ will provide more information about this examination. Also the difference between the 13 week and the 20 week ultrasound will be explained.


20 week ultrasound

The 20 week ultrasound is an extensive medical ultrasound which checks for any congenital abnormalities (not all are visible). Primarily the brain, heart, main organs and the face are examined. This ultrasound is optional.

At the 20 week ultrasound, the sonographer looks for the presence of ‘soft markers’. These ‘soft marker’ may indicate certain conditions, such as Down’s syndrome. The presence of any ‘soft markers’ do not guarantee a syndrome. Further examination would be required.

This ultrasound is performed between 19 and 20 weeks of pregnancy. The cost for this examination is covered by your basic health insurance.