The Hospitals Role in Newborn Hearing Screening
Newborn hearing screeners serve on the frontline in the world of newborn hearing. They make a significant impact on a newborn's life by providing proper guidance and education to their parents so they can make informed decisions about their newborn's hearing. Without adequate knowledge, parents can unintentionally choose a path where their newborn may miss out on early detection of hearing loss, which may cause developmental delays in speech and language, communication, reduced academic achievement and possibly, social implications. With over 300 babies being diagnosed with permanent hearing loss in Illinois each year, it is crucial that screening staff explain the importance of a hearing screening to all parents and how it can help detect a hearing loss in a baby so parents can take advantage of all the resources available to them. In addition, it will also help ensure timely developmental growth for their child compared to their hearing peers. Screeners have the ability to empower parents in making choices if they are fully equipped with the essentials of the newborn hearing screening process including conducting a successful screen; interpreting the screening results for parents; explaining next steps when their newborn refers on the initial hearing screening; and the importance of timely follow-up upon hospital discharge. To increase your understanding and maintain competency in all these areas, we have provided you with the following materials that include trainings that could be completed periodically in your own time to help you stay on top of it!