One of MICHA’s most fundamental services is the Audiology Unit, at which hearing tests and tympanometric (eardrum) examinations are conducted. MICHA’s audiologists have years of expertise at examining very young children and fitting them with suitable hearing aids. A multidisciplinary team which includes audiologists, speech therapists, an educational supervisor and a social worker, accompany and guide the family throughout the entire evaluation process.
Prior to a child’s referral to Beit MICHA , he or she undergoes a preliminary hearing test at a hospital or audiological clinic in the community. Newborns are now systematically screened for hearing loss at all hospitals throughout the country. When hearing loss is suspected, the child and family are referred to MICHA for diagnosis of hearing loss and assessment of the need for rehabilitation. Compliant with results of the audiological tests, including a tympanometric examination when necessary, the child begins the process of hearing aid fitting and is fitted with a temporary pair of hearing aids from MICHA’s Hearing Aid Loaner Bank. Due to the very young age of the children, the process of testing and hearing aid fitting is often a lengthy one, requiring numerous examinations until a final diagnosis can be made. The loaner hearing aids from MICHA’s Bank enable the children to begin therapy without further delay and help them get accustomed to wearing hearing aids. This also saves parents the expense of having to purchase more than one set of permanent hearing aids for their child and also ensures that the hearing aids ultimately purchased, are precisely what each child needs.
Throughout the child’s hearing evaluation process, the parents receive counseling from MICHA’s professional staff, as well as supportive guidance when the time comes to purchase permanent hearing aids. In the event that the child’s hearing level does not improve with the use of regular hearing aids, the parents receive information regarding the possibility of cochlear implants and are referred to one of the medical centers where the surgery is performed.