Newborn HearingScreening: An Analysis of Current Practices
State coordinators of early hearing detection and intervention (EHDI) programs completed a strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats, or SWOT, analysis that consisted of 12 evaluative areas of EHDI programs. For the newborn hearing screening area, a total of 293 items were listed by 49 EHDI coordinators, and themes were identified within each SWOT category. A threats, opportunities, weaknesses, and strengths, or TOWS, analysis yielded 12 recommendations that focused on similar themes. Out of these 12 recommendations, 3 distinct strategies emerged. States are encouraged to: 1) enhance existing screening practices by requiring systematic data collection, reporting, and automation as well as integration of universal newborn hearing screening database systems with other public health initiatives; 2) leverage existing state legislative support to update and expand current universal newborn hearing screening policies and garner increased resources (i.e., personnel and funding); and 3) reduce loss to follow-up by integrating and centralizing data collection and tracking among various agencies and addressing the screening needs of special populations (e.g., home births, non-native English speaking families, religious and cultural minorities). Addressed appropriately, these recommendations can substantially strengthen newborn hearing screening efforts in state EHDI programs.
Houston, K.T., Bradham, T., Muñoz, K., Hutsell Guignard, G. (2011). Newborn hearing screening: An analysis of current practices. Volta Review, 111(2), 109-120.