To ensure children who are Deaf/Hard of Hearing (D/HH) receive supports they need to reach their full potential, it is imperative that they be identified as early as possible. Early Hearing Detection and Intervention benchmarks stipulate children who are D/HH be enrolled in early intervention no later than 6 months of age. A major barrier to early enrollment is late identification. We reviewed records of children identified as D/HH in Louisiana after 6 months of age for 2015-2020 birth cohorts to determine factors contributing to the late identification. Cases were examined in-depth after it was determined that a diagnosis was attainable by 6 months of age. For each case, factors contributing to the late identification were evaluated and assigned to three sources: 1) family, 2) provider, or 3) hospital. Results of the analysis revealed that 46% of late identifications were due to families not completing recommended testing, while provider factors accounted for 25% of late identifications. Hospital factors accounted for 5% of late identifications, while 24% were attributable to more than one source. The analysis indicated that the percentage of late identifications due to families increased from 2015 to 2020, while the percentages due to provider and hospital factors decreased.
Mercer, D. D. Tran, T. McCabe, D. Ibieta, T. & Hubbard, D. (2023). Factors Contributing to Late Identification of Deaf/Hard of Hearing Children in Louisiana. Journal of Early Hearing Detection and Intervention, 8(2), 16-25.
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