Earlier this month, the U.S. Congress passed the Early Hearing Detection and Intervention (EHDI) Act of 2017, which allows newborns and young children to continue to receive hearing screenings. The reauthorization of this federal program will fund hearing screenings for newborns through 3-year-olds until 2022. In addition to increasing the age limit for screening, the new program enhances options for follow-up testing and intervention if a child fails the screening.
What is the Universal Newborn Hearing Screening?
Universal Newborn Hearing Screening is a mandatory test to a check a baby's hearing after birth, before leaving the hospital. If a baby is born at home, best practices recommends that the newborns hearing be tested before 1 month of age, a services that Dr. Wilson has the joy of being a part of here at Sound.
So Why is the Universal Newborn Hearing Screening So Important?
It is important to identify hearing loss as early as possible because babies start learning how to use sound as soon as they are born. Listening in the first months of life prepares babies to speak. These early steps are building blocks for communication as seen through babbling, and using words. Hearing loss is more common than any other problems or conditions that are screened for at birth. About one to three babies out of every 1,000 will be born with a permanent hearing loss.