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Diagnosis/Identification Data

When a newborn hearing screening result indicates a “did not pass” or a “refer with explanation” follow-up testing is needed. Sometimes the follow-up testing indicates typical hearing levels and no cause for concern. At other times, it identifies an infant as being deaf or hard of hearing. 

The goal is to have all deaf or hard of hearing babies diagnosed/identified by 3 months of age. The earlier they are identified, the sooner they can receive services to support language and learning outcomes. But, not all children receive a hearing screening. And, some do not return for a rescreen when they do not pass the initial screening. This is known as “loss-to-follow-up or loss-to-documentation (LTF/LTD).”

There are a few factors that contribute to LTF/LTD:

  • Due to HIPAA regulations, individual child data cannot be shared without explicit permission/referrals
  • Families may not realize the importance of following up with missed or failed hearing screens
  • Sometimes families are given information that compromises the importance of the screening (e.g., “Oh your baby is fine, it’s just fluid in the ear.”)
  • Pediatricians do not have easy access to newborn hearing screening results
  • CDPHE only sends one message, via postal letter, to families regarding failed screens
  • Audiologists, early interventionists and other professionals cannot get involved unless they are explicitly referred to a family
  • Babies cannot let caregivers know they are deaf or hard of hearing
  • Language and learning milestones may look very similar for deaf and hard of hearing babies compared to babies with typical hearing levels for the first 6-8 months of life
  • Sometimes it is difficult to contact families for various reasons (e.g., moved, changed phone numbers, ignored calls, etc.)

Colorado Hearing Diagnosis/Identification Data

2019 NumberPercent
Total with Documented Diagnosis194
Permanent Hearing Loss: Before 3 Months13469%
Note: 194 (diagnosed)/62,881 (total birth population) = prevalence of ~3/1000. Note #2 194 represents 11% of children who did not pass the Newborn Hearing Screening.

Laterality of Hearing Levels

2019NumberPercent
Total Documented Diagnosis195
Bilateral11559%
Unilateral8041%
Data obtained from XXXX

Type of Hearing Differences

2019NumberPercent
Sensorineural
Bilateral (n=64); 73%
Unilateral (n=29); 27%
8845%
Conductive
Bilateral (n=18); 38%
Unilateral (n=29); 62%
4724%
Mixed
Bilateral (n=5); 56%
Unilateral (n=4); 44%
95%
Type Unknown
Bilateral (n=27); 61%
Unilateral (n=17); 39%
4423%
Auditory Neuropathy
Bilateral (n=2); 25%
Unilateral (n=6); 75%
84%

Statistics about Hearing Levels

2019NumberPercent
Total Documented by Level195
Summary by Differences
Slight (n=11)
Bilateral (n=7)
Unilateral (n=4)

Mild (n=69)
Bilateral (n=51)
Unilateral (n=18)

Moderate (n=28)
Bilateral (n=16)
Unilateral (n=12)

Moderately Severe (n=31)
Bilateral (n=17)
Unilateral (n=14)

Severe (n=19)
Bilateral (n=8)
Unilateral (n=11)

Profound (n=12)
Bilateral (n=9)
Unilateral (n=3)

Unknown (n=28)
Bilateral (n=10)
Unilateral (n=18)

5%



35%



14%



16%



10%



6%



14%

Demographics

2019Identified Hearing Differences
(n=194)
Enrolled in Part C
Early Intervention Services
(n=101; data for n=89)
SexMale (n=121; 62%)
Female (n=73; 38%)
Male (n=52; 58%)
Female (n=37; 42%)
Maternal
Age
(in years)
15-19 (n=5; 3%)
20-24 (n=24; 12%)
24-34 (n=113; 58%)
35-50 (n=52; 27%)
15-19 (n=2; 2%)
20-24 (n=4; 4%)
24-34 (n=60; 68%)
35-50 (n=23; 26%)
Maternal EducationLess than HS (n=24; 13%)
HS/GED (n=49; 25%)
Some College/AA (n=41; 21%)
College graduate (n=72; 37%)
Unknown (n=8; 4%)
Less than HS (n=9; 10%)
HS/GED (n=19; 21%)
Some College/AA (n=14; 16%)
College graduate (n=43; 48%)
Unknown (n=4; 5%)
Maternal EthnicityHispanic/Latino (n=80; 41%)
Not Hispanic/Latino (n-114; 59%)
Hispanic/Latino (n=37; 42%)
Not Hispanic/Latino (n-52; 58%)
Maternal
Race
White (not Hispanic) (n=96; 49%)
White (Hispanic) (n=54; 28%)
Black/African American (n=12; 6%)
Black/African American (Hispanic) (n=1; 1%)
Asian (n=8; 4%
American Indian/Alaskan Native (n=4; 2%)
Unknown (n=14; 7%)
Other (n=5; 3%)
White (not Hispanic) (n=49; 55%)
White (Hispanic) (n=29; 33%)
Black/African American (n=3; 3%)
Black/African American (Hispanic) (n=1; 1%)
Asian (n=3; 3%
American Indian/Alaskan Native (n=0; 0%)
Unknown (n=4; 5%)
Other (n=0; 0%)