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      The Neonatal Hearing Screening Program in the Maltese Islands : Shining a spotlight on a national pilot project

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      ScienceOpen Preprints
      Neonatal, Hearing Loss, AABR, OAE, data, health


            An established neonatal hearing screening program is a direct indicator of the health and security index of a country. Its importance has been emphasised by WHO since 1995 and is now an anticipated standard of care in the developed world. The aim is for this standard to become a globally unquestionable prerequisite for healthcare. This study casts a detailed look at the neonatal hearing screening pilot project within the Maltese Islands, which was thereafter planned to be implemented on a national level to safeguard the future generation, make available timely responses and put the nation on the global map of a high standard of healthcare. This pilot project studies the outcomes of the collected data. From a sample of 1877 neonates born between October 2020 and September 2021, it was found that the rate of incidence of neonatal hearing loss identified at screening was that of 5 neonates, equating to 0.3%. This was a statistic comparable to various other studies done in different countries. It is notable that whilst it is known that NICU neonates are at an increased risk of hearing loss, none of the affected neonates in the pilot project were from this subgroup of recruits. In conclusion, the pilot project produced good results and gained satisfactory departmental feedback. An established national screening program is now in operation.


            Author and article information

            ScienceOpen Preprints
            1 April 2022
            [1 ] Mater Dei Hospital, Malta
            Author notes

            This work has been published open access under Creative Commons Attribution License CC BY 4.0 , which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. Conditions, terms of use and publishing policy can be found at www.scienceopen.com .

            : 1 April 2022
            none none

            The datasets generated during and/or analysed during the current study are available from the corresponding author on reasonable request.
            Neonatal,Hearing Loss,AABR,OAE,data,health


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