Early Hearing Detection and Intervention: New ASHA Guidelines Available on Children, Ages Birth to 5 Over the past decade, the emphasis on universal early detection of hearing loss in infants has grown considerably. The goal of early hearing detection and intervention (EHDI) is to maximize linguistic and communicative competence and literacy development for children who are hard of hearing or deaf. Without appropriate opportunities to ... ASHA News
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ASHA News  |   April 01, 2005
Early Hearing Detection and Intervention: New ASHA Guidelines Available on Children, Ages Birth to 5
Author Notes
  • Allan O. Diefendorf, is on the faculties of the Indiana University School of Medicine, and Purdue University. He directs audiology and speech-language pathology. Contact him at adiefend@iupui.edu.
    Allan O. Diefendorf, is on the faculties of the Indiana University School of Medicine, and Purdue University. He directs audiology and speech-language pathology. Contact him at adiefend@iupui.edu.×
Article Information
Hearing Disorders / Special Populations / Early Identification & Intervention / ASHA News & Member Stories / ASHA News
ASHA News   |   April 01, 2005
Early Hearing Detection and Intervention: New ASHA Guidelines Available on Children, Ages Birth to 5
The ASHA Leader, April 2005, Vol. 10, 4. doi:10.1044/leader.AN3.10052005.4
The ASHA Leader, April 2005, Vol. 10, 4. doi:10.1044/leader.AN3.10052005.4
Over the past decade, the emphasis on universal early detection of hearing loss in infants has grown considerably. The goal of early hearing detection and intervention (EHDI) is to maximize linguistic and communicative competence and literacy development for children who are hard of hearing or deaf. Without appropriate opportunities to learn language, children who are hard of hearing or deaf will fall behind their hearing peers in language, cognition, and social-emotional development.
The three components of EHDI include the birth admission screen, follow-up assessment, and intervention. The desired outcome of this process is that infants with confirmed hearing loss receive intervention before 6 months of age. Infants who are hard of hearing and deaf who receive intervention before 6 months of age maintain language development commensurate with their cognitive abilities through t he age of 5 years.
Almost 40 states mandate universal newborn hearing screening, and reports suggest that referral rates are consistent with or better than the recommendation of the Joint Committee on Infant Hearing (JCIH), i.e., 4% or less within one year of a program’s initiation. Additionally, Part C of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act provides funds for states to participate in early intervention services for infants (birth to 3 years of age) with hearing loss. These interdisciplinary services recognize and build on strengths, informed choice, traditions, and cultural beliefs of the family.
The bridge between these two components and thus the critical link to reaching the desired outcome of the JCIH is the follow-up assessment to establish the presence of hearing loss. Infants who meet the defined criteria for referral should receive follow-up audiologic evaluations before 3 months of age to confirm the presence of hearing loss.
Obviously, programs should strive to provide care to 100% of infants needing services. As such, this goal represents the major challenge to EHDI programs in the United States today.
The ASHA document, Guidelines for Audiologic Assessment of Children From Birth to 5 Years of Age, has been updated and is now available. The scope of this document has been specifically focused on family-centered, culturally competent assessment from birth to 5 years of age, with consideration of auditory evoked potentials, behavioral audiometry, otoacoustic emissions, acoustic immittance, developmental screenings, and functional assessment. The guidelines within this document fulfill the need for more specific procedures and protocols for serving children from birth to 5 years of age with hearing loss across all settings.
References
Yoshinaga-Itano, C., Sedey, A., Coulter, D.K., & Mehl, A.L. (1998). Language of early and later identified children with hearing loss. Pediatrics, 102:1161–1171. [Article] [PubMed]
Yoshinaga-Itano, C., Sedey, A., Coulter, D.K., & Mehl, A.L. (1998). Language of early and later identified children with hearing loss. Pediatrics, 102:1161–1171. [Article] [PubMed]×
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April 2005
Volume 10, Issue 5