Auckland District Health Board Audiology Service
Auckland DHB Audiology holds clinics at Greenlane Clinical Centre and Starship Children's Hospital.
Audiology is the study of hearing, hearing disorders, and habilitation/rehabilitation for individuals who have hearing loss. It encompasses the study of how the hearing mechanism works; the assessment of hearing; hearing and listening disorders; and the rehabilitation of individuals who have hearing loss.
Audiologists are healthcare professionals who identify, assess, and manage disorders of the auditory system. Audiologists provide audiological rehabilitation to children and adults of all ages. Audiologists select, fit, and dispense amplification systems such as hearing aids and related devices. Audiologists prevent hearing loss through the provision and fitting of hearing protective devices, consultation on the effects of noise on hearing, and consumer education.
Auckland District Health Board is now offering
Universal Newborn Hearing Screening
From April 2010 Auckland babies are being offered hearing screening tests within their first month of life.
Our aim is to test a baby’s hearing before they leave hospital. Outpatient clinics are provided in the Auckland District Health Board area to ensure babies not seen in hospital or born at home are offered the screening.
We have a team of nationally-trained screeners who are located at Auckland City Hospital. The screeners also run the outpatient clinics in the community. An important part of their role is to ensure babies identified with a potential moderate to severe hearing loss are followed up appropriately.
Families will be supported with early intervention services and education. This may include referrals to audiology services and to medical specialties.
What is Newborn Hearing Screening?
Newborn hearing screening checks how babies hear within the first period of their lives. If a baby has a hearing loss, finding it early is good for their language, learning and social development.
Approximately 170 children are born every year in New Zealand with permanent congenital hearing loss. Currently the average age for the detection of a permanent moderate to severe hearing loss is between 3 and 4 years of age. This means that when children are finally diagnosed with a hearing impairment they are behind their peers in many areas of development, particularly language acquisition, and they often never catch up.
Through screening, early detection and intervention is possible and these babies have a much greater chance of reaching their potential.
Newborn hearing screening is becoming the standard of care internationally, with programmes being established or already implemented in the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, Australia and a growing number of other countries.
As a response to the success of newborn hearing screening programmes, the New Zealand Government agreed to fund a universal newborn hearing screening programme for all eligible New Zealand children. The Newborn Hearing Screening Programme will be available throughout the country, free of charge.
For more information on Universal Newborn Hearing Screening please visit www.nsu.govt.nz or call the Newborn Hearing Screening office at Auckland District Health Board on (09) 307 4949 ext: 25020.
For more information on Newborn Hearing Screening, see Your Baby's Hearing Screening