Early detection programmes for congenital hearing loss have been successfully extended in different countries, especially in developed countries such as Spain, where this was formalized in 2003 by the Ministry of Health and the autonomous communities of Spain.
A document was recently published by the Commission for the Early Detection of Child Deafness (CODEPEH), aimed to improve the early detection of hearing impairments in children. This new document, the result of a project carried out by the Spanish Confederation of Families of Deaf People (FIAPAS) and CODEPEH, with the co-organisation of the Royal Board on Disability (an autonomous body attached to the Ministry of Health, Consumption and Social Welfare), aims to identify and analyse points for improvement and updating for the application of child hearing screening programmes.
In the scientific document elaborated within the framework of this project, which gives continuity to those previously published by CODEPEH between 2010 and 2017, there are some recommendations aimed at updating the programmes with the evidence that has appeared in the last decade, addressing the progress in screening technology, the impact of current knowledge on congenital cytomegalovirus infection and genetic studies of hearing loss in the programmes, as well as the systems for controlling the loss of cases in the process because they do not complete the diagnostic phase or they are late-onset deafnesses.
These recommendations also include the need to create a reliable database for case follow-up and the intervention of a coordinated interdisciplinary team focused on the family, as a basis for the success of the programmes. Finally, it is pointed out that, in the future, auditory screening, genetic study and the study of cytomegalovirus must be integrated into a combined screening. All this with the aim of achieving a complete diagnosis and early treatment of child deafness, both hearing loss present at birth and late and/or progressive onset.
The Document, which can be downloaded from the FIAPAS Virtual Library (https://bibliotecafiapas.es/tipo/documentos-codepeh/), is complemented by an informative brochure available at http://bit.ly/folletoactualizaciondeteccionsordera.
More information: Patricia Rodríguez – Tel: 646 793 027 – comunicación@fiapas.es- www.fiapas.es