Research Article  |   December 2012
Factors Influencing Follow-Up to Newborn Hearing Screening for Infants Who Are Hard of Hearing
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Elizabeth Walker
    University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA
  • Jacob Oleson
    University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA
  • Meredith Spratford
    Boystown National Research Hospital, Omaha, NE
  • Mary Pat Moeller
    Boystown National Research Hospital, Omaha, NE
  • Patricia Roush
    University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC
  • Hua Ou
    University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA
  • J. Bruce Tomblin
    University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA
  • Correspondence to Lenore Holte: lenore-holte@uiowa.edu
  • Editor and Associate Editor: Larry Humes
    Editor and Associate Editor: Larry Humes×
Hearing Disorders / Special Populations / Early Identification & Intervention / Research Article
Research Article   |   December 2012
Factors Influencing Follow-Up to Newborn Hearing Screening for Infants Who Are Hard of Hearing
American Journal of Audiology December 2012, Vol.21, 163-174. doi:10.1044/1059-0889(2012/12-0016)
History: Accepted 04 May 2012 , Received 19 Mar 2012
American Journal of Audiology December 2012, Vol.21, 163-174. doi:10.1044/1059-0889(2012/12-0016)
History: Accepted 04 May 2012 , Received 19 Mar 2012

Purpose: To document the epidemiological characteristics of a group of children who are hard of hearing, identify individual predictor variables for timely follow-up after a failed newborn hearing screening, and identify barriers to follow-up encountered by families.

Method: The authors used an accelerated longitudinal design to investigate outcomes for children who are hard of hearing in a large, multicenter study. The present study involved a subgroup of 193 children with hearing loss who did not pass the newborn hearing screening. The authors used available records to capture ages of confirmation of hearing loss, hearing aid fitting, and entry into early intervention. Linear regression models were used to investigate relationships among individual predictor variables and age at each follow-up benchmark.

Results: Of several predictor variables, only higher levels of maternal education were significantly associated with earlier confirmation of hearing loss and fitting of hearing aids; severity of hearing loss was not. No variables were significantly associated with age of entry into early intervention. Each recommended benchmark was met by a majority of children, but only one third met all of the benchmarks within the recommended time frame.

Conclusion: Results suggest that underserved communities need extra support in navigating steps that follow failed newborn hearing screening.

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