Australian Hearing is funded by the Australian Government to look after the hearing needs of children, from birth until 26 years of age, who have a permanent or long term hearing loss.
There is no charge for this service. If your child is ﬁtted with hearing aids, they can be provided at no cost other than a low annual maintenance fee.
Your child will be seen by one of Australian Hearing audiologists who specialise in paediatric audiology. Their role is to provide you with information, support and guidance in hearing loss, hearing aids if required, and follow up assessments.
Your audiologist will work with you to plan a program that suits your child’s individual needs. While your audiologist is the expert in hearing, you are the expert in your own child and family. Your audiologist can offer the following services:
Appointments are offered at your convenience, but certain times are more popular with many families.
If you require urgent assistance, you will be offered an appointment within an appropriate time frame, but you may need to accept a time that is not your ﬁrst preference. The aim is for you to see the same audiologist for each appointment. However, this is not always possible if, for example, you require an urgent appointment or your audiologist is on leave or working at another hearing centre. You can ask your audiologists to provide you with an attendance certiﬁcate to help with leave requirements in your work place.
Your first appointment
If your child has been diagnosed with a hearing loss, you will be offered an appointment within ten working days of Australian Hearing receiving the referral. At your ﬁrst appointment your audiologist will talk to you about your child’s results, and may do further hearing tests if required. Your audiologists will explain the effects of the hearing loss, answer your questions and work with you to decide the best way to proceed.
If hearing aids are recommended, your audiologist will take impressions of your child’s ear using a soft putty material. The appointment usually takes 60 to 90 minutes and you are welcome to bring a friend or relative along.
Hearing aid fitting appointment
This appointment will be held approximately ten working days after the earmould impression is made and will also take 60 to 90 minutes. The hearing aids will be adjusted to suit your child’s hearing loss a loss and individual ear canal shape.
Your audiologist will show you or your child how to operate the hearing aids and will discuss a routine for wearing them. We will also talk to you about educational support that is available and arrange a referral for further support if you wish.
Follow up appointment
Your audiologist will review your child’s progress with the hearing aids and answer any questions you or your child may have. Any problems that have occurred since the hearing aids were ﬁtted will be discussed. As a result of these discussions, it may necessary to adjust the hearing aids or test how well your child can hear with them. Your audiologist will then decide on the most appropriate review schedule.
Further follow up appointments
The timing and content of further appointments will depend on your child’s individual situation and age. Babies and toddlers may require several appointments for ﬁne-tuning the hearing aids and dealing with behavioural issues related to their use. We will evaluate the beneﬁts of ﬁtting hearing aids using a parent questionnaire; you may be asked to spend time observing your child in-between appointments.
It is normally quicker to obtain more comprehensive results with older children. A school-aged child may be reviewed in three or six months after the follow up appointment if your audiologist is satisﬁed that the hearing aids have been optimally adjusted.
Growing children need new earmoulds regularly, depending on their age and hearing loss:
Earmould impression appointments can be made as required.
Once the hearing aids are adjusted, children are placed onto a review program. Each year, at the start of your child’s review program, your audiologist will discuss your concerns and plan activities to help meet your goals and the paediatric protocols used by Australian Hearing.
A typical review program would include:
You can expect:
Further appointments may be arranged depending upon your child’s individual needs and goals. For example:
You can take your child’s hearing aids in for repair to your hearing centre at any time during ofﬁce hours without an appointment.
Please contact your hearing centre if you have any concerns about your child’s hearing.
If you think your child’s hearing is suddenly worse, please contact Australian Hearing urgently and you will be offered an appointment within 24 hours. Phone: 131 797
13-Nov-2015 4:19 PM (AEST)