Conducted by the Ministry of Health “Newborn Hearing Screening Program” with an average of 2 thousand 500 newborns each year in Turkey reportedly diagnosed with hearing loss.

According to the information obtained by the AA reporter from the General Directorate of Public Health, 1-3 out of every thousand newborns are born with hearing loss. This rate can rise to 6 per thousand due to childhood diseases, ear infections, accidents and some medications.

A “Newborn Hearing Screening Program” is carried out by the Ministry in order to detect children born with hearing loss or have hearing loss in the postpartum period, and to make appropriate treatment and rehabilitation practices.

Thanks to this program, it is aimed to ensure that children with hearing loss get involved in the society in the most harmonious way without adversely affecting their social, cognitive and language development, and to increase the sensitivity and awareness of the healthcare personnel and the society. With the screening program, it is aimed to identify children with hearing loss within 6 months after birth and to initiate their treatment.

After the birth, before being discharged from the hospital, the baby must have a hearing test. If the birth has not taken place in a health facility, it is important to have a hearing screening within 3 days after birth.

Hearing screening program is implemented in 1067 screening centers

in the birth of that health institution in Turkey (public, private, university) in the Newborn Hearing Screening Unit, by trained health personnel, simple, inexpensive and implementation of hearing screening is done on newborn infants with very simple tests. Centers where hearing screening is performed are within the body of health institutions where births are given.

Within the scope of this program, hearing screening program is applied in 1067 screening centers where 81 provincial public, university and private hospitals are located, and advanced diagnosis treatment is applied in 72 reference centers. Each year, an average of 2,500 newborns are diagnosed with hearing loss and early rehabilitation and treatment opportunities are provided.

crawling all over Turkey are two types of tests carried out with respect to the determination by the Commission on Science and the Ministry of Health also approved screening protocols. The tests are simple, inexpensive, easy to administer, and do not cause any pain or harm to the baby.

All screenings should be done within the first month after birth.

Babies who are thought to have hearing loss are referred to a higher center and advanced hearing tests are applied to these babies. If hearing loss is diagnosed, then treatment options are determined according to the type and cause of the loss.

Some babies can be treated with medication, while others may need a hearing aid or a bionic ear called a cochlear implant. For this reason, babies should be screened within the first month after birth, diagnosed within 3 months, if any, and start using the device within 6 months if necessary.

Prevalence of permanent hearing loss in the school-age population at 9 per thousand

Hearing loss can occur in the postpartum period due to infections, traumas and genetic diseases that cause progressive hearing loss.

It is stated that the prevalence of permanent hearing loss has increased to 9 per thousand in school-age children compared to the population. It is stated that permanent or temporary hearing loss in one or both ears affects more than 14 percent of school-age children, and the class repetition rate is reported as 37 percent even in unilateral hearing loss.

hearing screening in Turkey, in the year 1 of primary education in 81 provinces, hearing screening in accordance with established protocols, in trained Community Health Centers or in the Healthy Life health personnel of the Central People’s implemented in the field by Health General Directorate and Provincial Health Directorates.

Children with suspected hearing loss as a result of the screening are referred to the otolaryngologist in the province. Cases requiring further examination and treatment are referred to reference centers.

Hearing aids and cochlear implants to be used by babies and children are paid by the Social Security Institution (SGK).




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