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Identification and Intervention of Hearing Loss in Maharashtra: A Survey of Parental Experience
Background Universal newborn hearing screening is not yet fully implemented in India at a national level due to many challenges like cost, limited specialist staff, loss to follow-up, and importance of hearing in speech language development. Most often the parents identify and initiate intervention for the child's hearing loss after the critical period of development is over. There is a need to explore the age at which children are detected and identified with hearing loss, fitted with appropriate intervention, and the barriers faced during this process.
Method Data was collected from parents of 60 children with hearing loss aged between 2 and 6 years. A questionnaire comprising of 27 items was developed and administered on parents through face-to-face and telephonic interviews. The data was descriptively analyzed to study the parents’ responses.
Results The median age at suspicion was 12 months, median age at identification was 18 months, and age at initiation of intervention was 24 months in children with hearing loss between the age range of 2 to 6 years. Financial constraint was reported to be the most common barrier among the others faced by the parents.
Conclusion This study highlights the current status of the age at identification and intervention of hearing loss in children in Maharashtra. These findings can help to create awareness regarding the need for early identification and appropriate management in children with hearing loss for development of adequate verbal communication skills.
Article published online:
26 May 2023
© 2023. Indian Society of Otology. This is an open access article published by Thieme under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonDerivative-NonCommercial-License, permitting copying and reproduction so long as the original work is given appropriate credit. Contents may not be used for commercial purposes, or adapted, remixed, transformed or built upon. (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).
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