November 16, 2007

 The outlook is bright for newborns in the United States, as far as their hearing health care is concerned, with reports showing that 65% of all newborns are screened for hearing loss. Hearing screening for newborns is offered by 45 states.

 In 1993, fewer than 5%of newborns in the United States received hearing screening before they left the hospital. Recent figure show screenings reach as high as 65% are expected to increase, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL).

 It is reported that between 3 and 4 newborns in 1,000 suffer from hearing loss, which is one of the most common developmental abnormalities present at birth.

 Nationally, 45 states offer routine hearing screening of newborns and among the other five, Michigan is in the process of instituting a routine screening program for newborns before they leave the hospital.

 The federal Newborn Infant Hearing Screening and Intervention Act of 1999 offers up to three years of grant funding to states for development of screening and intervention programs.