The range of services, including hearing tests undertaken by hearing health professionals such as audiologists and speech pathologists, to detect and manage hearing loss in young children and infants is known as habilitation.
Early Intervention & Habilitation
Early detection of hearing loss in infants, known as known as Early Intervention is the first important step in the Habilitation process.
Once hearing loss has been identified, management strategies can be put in place to help children develop their communication and language skills. Early Intervention usually starts with a Newborn Hearing Screening – a series of reliable and accurate hearing tests carried out on newborn infants in hospitals throughout Australia.
As hearing plays an important part in speech and communication, Early Intervention provides hearing impaired infants and children with the best chance to develop these essential learning skills needed for their future education and employment. Ongoing strategies to manage hearing loss in infants and children can include the fitting of Hearing Aids and Cochlear Implants, as well as surgery, medications and therapies.
Early Intervention Service Providers
Below is a list of organisations that are either early intervention providers or conduct research into the clinical management of hearing loss in infants and children:
- Centre of Research Excellence in Child Language
- Cora Barclay Centre
- Early Education Program
- Australian Hearing
- Hear and Say Centre
- Sydney Cochlear Implant Clinic
- Shepherd Centre
- Royal Institute For Deaf and Blind Children
- Telethon Speech and Hearing.
Support & Community-based Organisations
There are organisations that can help you connect with other parents who have children with hearing loss. These organisations provide useful information for families who have children with hearing loss and can help represent the interests of people with a hearing impairment to the government and the wider community.
Some of the organisations that support families and children with hearing loss are listed below: