The EAR Foundation of Arizona is proud to sponsor several programs for persons with hearing losses and for the detection of hearing loss. You can read about these programs by clicking on the links on the left-hand side of this page.
To-date, the majority of our funded programs have focused on children. Thanks to the generosity of Vitalyst Health Foundation, The EAR Foundation of Arizona will continue the Hear For Kids program. Additionally, through a multi-year contract with the Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS), The EAR Foundation of Arizona will also continue to work in the area of newborn hearing screening of all infants born in Arizona. This project is implemented and in partnership with ADHS-Office of Newborn Screening.
Through regular planning sessions, the Board of Directors, administrative staff and affiliated clinical staff of The EAR Foundation of Arizona identify important developments related to new technologies, demographic trends and socio-economic trends. We develop strategic plans and grant proposals for the purpose of translating trends and visions into useful and beneficial programs and services.
BASICS HEARING &
In June of 2023 EFAz decided to pause the BASICS program. EFAz created the BASICS program in 2010 to help identify children with late onset or progressive hearing loss or vision problems prior to entering school. EFAZ and BASICS program staff would like to express our heartfelt appreciation to all the early childhood programs, schools, community programs, and individuals who have supported us throughout our journey. Your collaboration and dedication have been important in our efforts to improve the well-being of children.
For your sensory screening needs please consider resources and programs such as:
Arizona Early Intervention Program: des.az.gov/azeip
Arizona Dept. of Education: azed.gov/azFind:azed.gov/specialeducation/az-find
First Things First: firstthingsfirst.org
To find qualified pediatric audiology providers near you see EHDI-PALS: Mehdi-pals.org
HEAR FOR KIDS
Providing Loaner Hearing Aids
HEAR For Kids™ is a program for children 0-18 years of age, in Arizona. It is managed by Lylis Olsen, a master's prepared audiologist. HEAR for Kids™, working with your own audiologist, provides loaner hearing aids, primarily for children with newly identified hearing loss.
Permanent hearing aids can also be provided if the family meets financial criteria and does not have other insurance coverage. Vouchers for audiological evaluation or medical evaluation, to provide medical clearance for hearing aids, are also available to families with financial need.
As a result of this program, 170 loaner hearing aids are presently available to families. This program is funded by a grant from Vitalyst Health Foundation and private donations.
Contact your audiologist to apply for the loaner or permanent hearing aid program. Requests for medical or audiological vouchers are accepted from school health, Head Start staff, audiologists, and other medical or early intervention professionals.
For information, please contact Lylis Olsen, program manager, Hear for Kids.
Phone: (602) 690-3975
FAX: (602) 296-0425
Arizona Early Hearing Detection and Intervention
The EAR Foundation of Arizona is pleased to be the recipient of a three year federal grant to improve Early Hearing Detection and Intervention in Arizona. Arizona screens 98% of all births for hearing by one month of age. This grant will focus on assuring that infants receive diagnostic evaluations by three months of age, are enrolled in early intervention by six months of age, and receive parent to parent support throughout their journey. Early identification allows access to communication during critical brain development and is key to developing language to succeed in school and life.
The EAR Foundation of Arizona recognizes the importance of Early Hearing Detection and Intervention (EHDI) for all of Arizona's newborns. EFAz has been instrumental in assisting Arizona's hospitals and birthing centers with their newborn hearing screening, tracking, and follow-up programs. In addition to working with hospitals, EFAz works closely with the Arizona Department of Health Services and other agencies and organizations in a collaborative effort to establish a statewide EHDI system to ensure all children in need of follow-up receive timely and appropriate services.
EFAz focuses on providing outreach and education throughout the state addressing screening practices, reporting, referral, and follow-up. Site visits are offered to assess and improve current screening practices, improve bidirectional communication, and ensure an effective newborn screening flow within individual systems. For more information, email: email@example.com.
OTHER PROGRAMS & ADVOCACY WORK
Adult Hearing Aids
The EAR foundation of Arizona does not accept applications for adult hearing aids.
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The EAR Foundation of Arizona provides technical assistance to the Arizona Department of Health Services, school districts, hospitals and other agencies. Consulting staff work collaboratively with other agencies and organizations to advocate on behalf of persons with hearing loss and who are deaf.
The EAR Foundation of Arizona consultants can be contracted to help set-up hearing screening programs in hospitals, clinics, offices and schools.
They can also provide in-service training to staff on hearing related issues such as:
Hearing screening in newborns and infants
School hearing screening
To receive more information, please call 602-535-5566 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Fifty-first Legislature passed HB2491 which included an amendment adding hearing disorders to the mandated panel of newborn screens. The American College of Medical Genetics (AMCG) recommended newborn hearing screening as one of the screens in the newborn screening panel. Arizona Statute 36-694 has been updated to reflect the inclusion of hearing disorders. Hearing loss is the most common condition present at birth. In 2013, 138 Arizona babies were identified with a confirmed hearing loss.
Click here to see the bill.
According to the National Center for Hearing Assessment & Management (NCHAM) at Utah State University, in March 1993 the National Institutes of Health Consensus Development Conference recommended that all newborn infants in the U.S. be screened for a potential hearing loss before being discharged from the hospital. As a result of this recommendation, to-date, 35 states have passed legislation to mandate the provision of hearing screening of newborn infants in their respective states.
The EAR Foundation of Arizona, partnering with The Arizona Department of Health Services, The March of Dimes and The Arizona Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing worked to successfully pass Senate Bill 1250 (SB1250) during the 2005 Arizona legislative session.
SB1250 expands newborn screening in Arizona to include up to 29 congenital disorders, including hearing loss. The legislative changes will insure that hospitals in Arizona continue to receive the technical assistance needed to maintain quality screening programs. The legislation also provides for a centralized system of follow-up at The Arizona Department of Health Services to ensure that infants with hearing loss born in Arizona are identified early, and receive appropriate intervention before six months of age.