Early Hearing Detection & Intervention Program – Seeking Champion


Overview: The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) receives funding in the form of a cooperative agreements from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB) for the planning, ongoing management, and implementation of its Early Hearing Detection and Intervention (EHDI) program.  In 2001 the AAP implemented a program, Improving the Effectiveness of Newborn Hearing Screening, Diagnosis, and Intervention through the medical home, focused on increasing the involvement of primary care pediatricians and other child health care providers by linking follow-up services more closely to the newborn's medical home.  Almost every AAP chapter currently has a member volunteer appointed as the EHDI Chapter Champion. These individuals serve as the point person on newborn hearing issues at the state and local level to support reaching each of the AAP EHDI program goals.

Key components of the AAP EHDI program include:

  • Creating and sustaining a network of EHDI Chapter Champions in states (currently there are approximately 62 Chapter Champions currently in the network)
  • Developing professional education materials and programs for pediatricians and other pediatric health care providers
  • Leading advocacy efforts at the state and federal levels
  • Collaborating with state and federal agencies and programs on EHDI activities (including MCHB, CDC and the Social Security Administration)
  • Collaborating with organizations at the state and national level (the National Center for Hearing Assessment and Management (NCHAM), Hands & Voices, Deaf consumer organizations, and groups that represent obstetricians, family physicians, audiologists, etc.

Role and Responsibilities of Chapter Champions:

The role of the Chapter Champion is completely voluntary and varies by AAP chapter, therefore the time commitment will vary.

These individuals commit to the following:

  • Collaborate with the state's department of human services/department of public health staff and others in state government agencies on EHDI activities and initiatives;
  • Provide leadership, guidance and education to pediatricians and other pediatric health care providers in the state on EHDI issues and activities;\
  • Provide education to members of their respective AAP chapters and others in the state on EHDI activities (including writing articles for newsletters, resident education, grand rounds, and hospital- and office-based presentations);
  • Participate in topic-specific educational conference calls offered by various agencies, organizations and the AAP to further their own EHDI knowledge and education;
  • Attend and participate in the state EHDI hearing screening advisory committee meetings/conference calls;
  • Collaborate with their peers to influence state-level policy and programs related to deaf or hard of hearing children.

Chapter Champions are dedicated, eager, and energetic; they are committed to improving systems and outcomes related to deaf and hard of hearing children the local, state and chapter levels.

AAP Staff Contacts:

Karla Palmer
American Academy of Pediatrics
Program Specialist, Healthy Tomorrows & EHDI Telephone: 630/626-6279
E-Mail: kpalmer@aap.org

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