Hearing Assessment in Infants and Children: Recommendations Beyond Neonatal Screening
Congenital or acquired hearing loss in infants and children has been linked with lifelong deficits in speech and language acquisition, poor academic performance, personal-social maladjustments, and emotional difficulties. Identification of hearing loss through neonatal hearing screening, regular surveillance of developmental milestones, auditory skills, parental concerns, and middle-ear status and objective hearing screening of all infants and children at critical developmental stages can prevent or reduce many of these adverse consequences. This report promotes a proactive, consistent, and explicit process for the early identification of children with hearing loss in the medical home. An algorithm of the recommended approach has been developed to assist in the detection and documentation of, and intervention for, hearing loss.