Title:
The organisation of universal newborn hearing screening in the Wallonia-Brussels Federation
Authors:
B. Vos , R. Lagasse and A. Levêque 1,2,3
Institutions:
Centre dEpidémiologie Périnatale (CEpiP), Brussels, Belgium; Université libre de Bruxelles, School of Public Health, Research Center Health Policy and Systems International Health, Brussels, Belgium; 3Université libre de Bruxelles, School of Public Health, Research Center Epidemiology, Biostatistic and Clinical Research, Brussels, Belgium
Keywords:
Neonatal screening; hearing loss; otoacoustic emissions
Pages:
9 - 15
Abstract:
The organisation of universal newborn hearing screening in the Wallonia-Brussels Federation. Objective: A universal newborn hearing screening programme based on the voluntary participation of maternity hospitals has been implemented in the Wallonia-Brussels Federation since November 2006. This paper presents the results of this pro- gramme and its evolution since its implementation (2007-2011). Method: Two-step screening by automated otoacoustic emissions is performed on newborns without risk factors for hearing loss and, if abnormal responses or risk factor(s) are found, auditory brainstem response audiometry is performed. Descriptive analyses of the eligible population, coverage rates and prevalence of hearing loss were presented by year of birth (2007-2011) and globally. Results: Over five years, the first screening test coverage rate increased to almost 95%, 2.4% of the newborns without risk factors were referred for auditory brainstem response audiometry and 42.6% of the newborns referred were lost to follow- up. Of the newborns with risk factor(s) for hearing loss, 6.3% were not tested, 87.4% had normal bilateral hearing and 3.7% were lost to follow-up. Between 2007 and 2011, hearing impairment was reported in 3.18 newborns eligible for the programme, whatever the kind of hearing loss. Conclusions: Like many other countries and areas, the Wallonia-Brussels Federation has implemented a universal new- born hearing screening programme. The results of this programme evolved favourably during the period 2007-2011, even if some efforts had to be made to improve the follow-up of the referred newborns and data quality.
Issue:
Suppl. 21, 2013


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The organisation of universal newborn hearing screening in the Wallonia-Brussels Federation