NEWBORN HEARING SCREENING PROGRAM
Why is hearing important for newborns?
See Good Hearing Helps a Baby Learn to Talk brochure. The first three years of life are the most important period for learning speech and language. Good hearing helps babies learn language, thinking and social skills that they will use for the rest of their lives.
Should all babies receive hearing screening?
Yes. Three babies per thousand are born with some degree of hearing loss. Screening is required by Hawaii state law and helps identify hearing loss as soon as possible. See Universal Newborn Hearing Screening brochure. If intervention services begin before six months of age, babies with hearing loss have a better chance of learning to communicate as well as babies without hearing loss.
How soon should babies be screened?
- All babies should have a hearing screening before 1 month of age.
- Babies who do not pass screening should have a diagnostic evaluation before 3 months of age.
- Babies with hearing loss should begin early intervention services before 6 months of age.
What does the Newborn Hearing Screening Program do?
The Newborn Hearing Screening Program supports statewide efforts to screen all babies for hearing loss. The program:
- Coordinates hospital screening activities statewide.
- Helps families set up diagnostic evaluations for babies who do not pass screening and for children under three years old who may have developed a hearing loss after birth.
- Helps families get early intervention services for young children with hearing loss.
- Provides information to families, health care providers, early intervention staff and the public.
- Maintains statewide data on hearing screening results and follow-up.
The Newborn Hearing Screening Program is working to improve early hearing detection and intervention in Hawaii. See Baby HEARS-Hawaii Follow-up Project for more details.
Hawaii Data for 2000-2006
To find out more, contact:
Newborn Hearing Screening Program
1350 South King Street, Suite 200
Honolulu, HI 96814
Ph: 808-594-0043 Fax: 808-594-0015