Infant hearing screening comes to Kenya!
Good news from Kenya! Steve Kittur writes:
We have secured some small funding to pilot an infant hearing screening project in my hometown. It will target 0-5 year olds in one public hospital and several ECD centers. The project runs for one year until Jan. 2023.
We have been trained on and use the screening protocol developed by the US-based Early Childhood Hearing Outreach (ECHO) program out of Utah State University. We obtained two OAE screening devices and so far all is well. We had however designed our screening protocol to involve hired audiologists/ audiological equipment.
The guys in white t-shirts are the screeners drawn from Maternity, MCH (Mother-Child Health) Clinic, ENT and pediatric departments at Kapsabet County Referral Hospital, Nandi County, Kenya. They have undergone thorough training on the ECHO protocol and are excited to serve at the hospital and out-reach into the local churches and other ECD (Early Childhood Development) Centers.
Based on our little experience and looking ahead however, we’re projecting the need for in-house equipment that will make the place a one-stop shop for hearing and speech.
As a first in the region, the program is attracting more attention and might be used by other regions of the country as a bench-mark for developing their own.
In the meantime, there will be many ‘good’ problems as more families than we can handle express a need for support.
We are only 3 weeks into the program and with only two screening devices we’re beginning to feel the pressure from families requiring more than just screening.
The project and equipment is made possible through Children’s Speech and Hearing Loss Organization (Chishlo) and Global Partnerships for Hearing Health (GPHH).
We look forward to hearing more from Steve!
17 March 2022