American Speech-Language-Hearing Association

New Jersey Hearing Screening Requirements for Newborns and School-Aged Children

The following information summarizes hearing screening programs for newborns and school-aged children.

The information has been collected by researching individual state statutes, regulations, policy documents, and by contacting each state. The information is reviewed on an annual basis. Please be advised that regulations and policy may change at any time, so always check with your state for the most up-to-date information.

Newborn Screening

Screening

All newborn children shall be screened for hearing loss by an appropriate electrophysiologic screening measure.

Intervention

Upon or prior to the admission of a newborn to a birthing facility in the state, the birthing facility shall provide all parents of the newborn with literature provided by the Department of Health describing the normal development of auditory function and the New Jersey Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Program (EHDI).

The literature will be designed to provide parents with an understanding of the implications of hearing loss on the development of speech and language and provide information regarding normal auditory response behaviors.

If an infant does not pass hearing screening on one or both ears prior to discharge, then, prior to the infant's discharge home, the birthing facility shall:

  1. Notify the responsible physician by written documentation, and
  2. Notify and counsel the parent via face-to-face communication along with written documentation of the need for follow-up hearing screening or audiologic evaluation

When a permanent hearing loss is confirmed, the audiologist shall inform the responsible physician by written documentation and parents via face-to-face communication and written documentation of the type and degree of hearing loss.

When a diagnosis of permanent hearing loss is made, the responsible physician shall advise the parents of the importance of medical and audiologic evaluations consistent with the recommendations of the Joint Committee on Infant Hearing position statement, and shall make appropriate referrals, as necessary, for appropriate follow-up consultations to be completed by three months post-diagnosis.

In addition, the responsible physician shall advise the parents of the importance of ongoing audiologic reevaluation to monitor hearing status and the performance of prescribed devices such as hearing aids or cochlear implants.

  1. To the extent a hearing aid is indicated, responsible physicians should refer the requirement of otolaryngologic referral as a condition of the dispensing of hearing aids to minors.
  2. Responsible physicians shall also register children diagnosed with hearing loss (through 21 years of age) with the Special Child Health Services Registry.

Standards/Protocols

The individuals who conduct outpatient hearing screening, rescreening or audiologic evaluation shall:

  1. Perform screening, rescreening or audiologic evaluation of both ears, regardless of whether the infant previously obtained a non-passing result of only one ear upon prior hearing screening or rescreening,
  2. Use auditory brainstem response (ABR) if the infant previously obtained a non-passing result upon the use of ABR,
  3. Use ABR or otoacoustic emissions (OAE) if the infant previously obtained a non-passing result upon the use of OAE,
  4. Complete the Newborn Hearing Follow-up Report with ear-specific results, to the extent possible, and
  5. Submit the completed Newborn Hearing Follow-up Report to the EHDI program and report the results to the infant‘s responsible physician, within 10 business days of the conduct of the outpatient screening, rescreening or audiologic evaluation.

Tracking/Reporting

When a permanent hearing loss is confirmed in a child who is a New Jersey resident, the individual making the diagnosis shall complete and submit the forms, within 10 business days of the diagnosis:

  1. For children from birth to their 3rd birthday, a Newborn Hearing Follow-up Report form to the EHDI program, and
  2. For children from birth to their 21st birthday, a Special Child Health Services Registration form to the Special Child Health Services Registry

School-Age Screening

Ages/Populations Screened

Screening for auditory acuity shall be conducted annually for students in kindergarten through grade three and in grades seven and eleven.

Who Can Screen

Screenings shall be conducted by a school physician, school nurse, physical education instructor or other school personnel properly trained.

Training for Screeners

Training for screeners is not addressed by laws/regulations.

Type of Testing

Type of testing is not addressed by laws/regulations.

Equipment Standards

Equipment standards are not addressed by laws/regulations.

Follow-up Protocols & Documentation

The school district shall provide for the notification of the parent of any student suspected of deviation from the recommended standard.

Resources

For further information on hearing screening requirements, visit these websites:

Questions regarding state advocacy issues? Call ASHA at 800-498-2071 and ask for the State Advocacy Team.

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