The Shiawassee County Health Department, in coordination with the Michigan Department of Community Health, provides periodic hearing screenings to approximately 5,000 children in our county each year.
Hearing screening of pre-school children is provided by health department technicians at least once between the ages of three and five years. School-age children are screened in kindergarten and grades 2 and 4.
The primary purpose of hearing screening is to identify hearing loss and to reduce preventable hearing loss and ear conditions by assisting families in obtaining appropriate medical care. Serous otitis media (ear infection) is the most commonly identified and treated problem.
Screening is available to all children in Michigan without cost and screenings are conducted in public, private, and charter schools as well as at the health department.
The program includes two stages of screening (preliminary and threshold). About 5% of all children screened require a medical referral. Children who are referred are assisted by health department technicians to obtain a medical evaluation either from a private provider or through our Otology Clinic, which is offered twice a year. Our health department technicians attend an intensive three-week classroom and clinical practicum training which prepares them for all stages of the screening process for pre-school and school age children.
- Quality assurance is provided for the approximately 150 local health department threshold technicians by the MDCH audiology consultants through field visits and required biennial skills update workshops. In local health departments, the Hearing Program Coordinator also provides quality assurance.
- The Hearing Screening Program provides initial screening, retesting, and referral of children who do not pass the threshold testing.Follow-up is required in an effort to assure that service was received or to facilitate the child receiving service from an otology clinic.
- The Hearing Program screens in excess of 650,000 children in Michigan.
Links to more information HERE