Thiruvananthapuram

Auditory verbal therapy centre at medical college hospital

Administrative sanction for ₹79 lakh for facility

After the Government Medical College Hospital, Kozhikode, and the National Institute of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Thrissur, the Government Medical College Hospital (MCH) in the city too is set to get a state-of-the-art auditory verbal therapy centre.

Administrative sanction for ₹79 lakh has been accorded to the centre, to be set up in the ENT Department of the hospital by the Women and Child Development Department through the Kerala Social Security Mission (KSSM), Minister for Women and Child Development K.K. Shylaja has said.

The centre will come up as part of the Kathoram project, a sub-project being implemented by the KSSM under the Anuyatra project launched to make Kerala a differently abled-friendly State. The objective is to start such centres in all medical colleges.

Tests before and after cochlear implant surgery and therapies will be provided for free at the new centre, which will have modern equipment for hearing disability management.

Early intervention

Studies have shown that a baby can hear sounds from 23 weeks to 30 weeks in the mother’s womb. This makes it possible for tests to be conducted immediately after birth to detect if a baby has any hearing problems. This is especially significant as any hearing problems at birth, if detected early, can be corrected or their effects reduced through therapies and other treatment, thereby increasing the possibility of the children leading normal lives.

At the MCH, children who get therapy as part of the cochlear implant surgeries are joined by those referred to by peripheral hospitals and in nearby districts too for audiology and speech language interventions. Children who have had cochlear implants attend auditory verbal therapy. However, there is no separate room for this; therapy rooms for routine speech therapy are used. As a result, children have to wait long as the speech therapy rooms are mostly engaged.

The rooms are actually aluminium fabricated cabins, and ambient noise interferes with the auditory training. There are no rooms for speech and language evaluation, cochlear implant mapping, counselling, and conducting parent orientation programmes. Sufficient modern equipment for evaluation and providing interventions is also needed.

The auditory verbal therapy centre in the ENT department will make a difference on these fronts.

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Printable version | Jul 15, 2020 5:58:40 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Thiruvananthapuram/auditory-verbal-therapy-centre-at-medical-college-hospital/article29729254.ece

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