DefinitionPercentage of infants receiving audiologic follow-up after a positive screening for hearing loss by 3 months of age.
NumeratorNumber of infants receiving audiologic follow-up after a positive screening for hearing loss by 3 months of age.
DenominatorTotal number of infants who had a positive screening for hearing loss.
Why Is This Important?In the United States, approximately 1 to 3 of every 1,000 newborns are affected by significant hearing loss. Without newborn hearing loss screening, the average age of hearing loss detection is about 2 1/2 years of age which can affect the speech development and language acquisition of the child. Treatment for significant hearing loss is recommended prior to 6 months of age to avoid irreversible and permanent speech, language, and cognitive impairments.
Healthy People Objective: Receipt of audiologic evaluation no later than age 3 months for infants who did not pass the hearing screeningU.S. Target: 72.6 percent
State Target: 80.0 percent
Other Objectives'''Healthy New Jersey Objective MCH-13''': Increase the percentage of infants receiving audiologic follow-up after a positive screen for hearing loss by 3 months of age to 80%.
How Are We Doing?In 2021, two-thirds of infants received an audiologic follow-up after a positive screening for hearing loss by 3 months of age. This is more than double the proportion followed-up in 2002 when universal newborn hearing screening was mandated in New Jersey.
In many regions the COVID-19 pandemic interrupted the delivery of health care services in 2020, including newborn hearing screening and follow-up services. As a result, infants born in late 2019 and needing follow-up services in 2020 may have had difficulties obtaining these services.
Racial/ethnic disparities have decreased over time. In 2002, the lowest rate (that of Hispanics) was 46% below the highest rate (Asians). In 2021, the lowest rate (Blacks) was 26% below the highest rate (Whites).
What Is Being Done?The [https://nj.gov/health/fhs/nbs/ehdi/ New Jersey Early Hearing Detection and Intervention] (EHDI) program works to ensure that all New Jersey children receive timely and appropriate screening, diagnosis, and intervention for hearing loss.
Health Program InformationNJDOH Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Program: [https://nj.gov/health/fhs/nbs/ehdi/]