Summary of the Systematic Review

Article Citation

Loss to Follow-up in Newborn Hearing Screening Programs: A Systematic Review of the Evidence

Mullen, R., Frymark, T., et al. (2008).
Rockville (MD): National Center for Evidence-Based Practice in Communication Disorders, American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, 1-15.
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Sponsoring Body

Centers for Disease Control

Article Quality Ratings

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Indicators of Review Quality

  • Yes The review states a clearly focused question/aim.
  • Yes Criteria for inclusion of studies are provided.
  • Yes Search strategy described in sufficient detail for replication.
  • Yes Included studies are assessed for study quality.
  • Yes Quality assessments are reproducible.
  • Yes Characteristics of the included studies are provided.

Article Details

Description

This is a systematic review of peer-reviewed studies examining the current state of the evidence pertaining to loss to follow-up after initial identification of newborn hearing loss.

Questions/Aims Addressed

  1. What characteristics of individuals, families, or populations have been found to be associated with risk of delays or loss to follow-up for children with positive initial screen for hearing loss and in need of an audiologic evaluation by three months?
  2. What characteristics of individuals, families, or populations have been found to be associated with risk of delays or loss to follow-up for children with a positive diagnosis of hearing loss and in need of an audiologic intervention by six months?
  3. What has been the effectiveness of initiatives designed to increase follow-up for appropriate audiologic evaluation by three months of age?
  4. What has been the effectiveness of initiatives designed to increase follow-up for appropriate audiologic intervention by six months of age?

Population

Infants less than six months of age

Intervention/Assessment

  • Hearing screening
  • Audiological evaluation
  • Interventions to reduce loss to follow up

Number of Studies Included

14

Years Included

1990 to January 2008


Conclusions from This Systematic Review

What are Conclusions?

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Screening

"The small number, poor quality and inconsistent findings within the available evidence do not provide meaningful direction for clinicians or policymakers in identifying patients/families at the highest risk of loss to follow-up, nor how to decrease that risk. More high quality epidemiologic studies with precise definitions of terminology and incorporation of multivariate statistical analyses are needed, as are high quality experimental or quasi-experimental studies of well-defined interventions targeted at increasing follow-up" (p. 12).

Keywords: Universal Newborn Hearing Screening (UNHS) Program, Follow-Up/Timing

Service Delivery

"The small number, poor quality and inconsistent findings within the available evidence do not provide meaningful direction for clinicians or policymakers in identifying patients/families at the highest risk of loss to follow-up, nor how to decrease that risk. More high quality epidemiologic studies with precise definitions of terminology and incorporation of multivariate statistical analyses are needed, as are high quality experimental or quasi-experimental studies of well-defined interventions targeted at increasing follow-up" (p. 12).

Keywords: Universal Newborn Hearing Screening (UNHS) Program, Follow-Up/Timing

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