Other States

Pilot project to check for deafness in newborns in Maharashtra

Rajesh Tope. File.   | Photo Credit: The Hindu

Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh Tope on Thursday said an experimental project will use mobile units to check the hearing of newborn children in the State. The project will be started in Pune, Gadchiroli and Jalna districts, he added.

This initiative comes in the backdrop of the National Deafness Prevention Program, which is being implemented in 16 places in the State.

The pilot project was conceived by Baramati MP and senior Nationalist Congress Party leader Supriya Sule and was presented by Abhijit Raut, State organiser, Disability Rights Development Forum, at the Yashwantrao Chavan Pratishthan in Mumbai.

Mr. Tope had a detailed discussion with senior Health officials on the implementation of the otoacoustic emission (OAE) method in newborns following the presentation.

“Early hearing problems in children can be diagnosed and treated with the necessary treatment. Therefore, it is important to implement this programme for the overall development of children,” the Health Minister said.

There were around 92,000 hearing and language-impaired persons at present in the State, of which 51% were in rural areas and the rest in urban pockets, he added.

“Deafness can be prevented if this test is done at an early stage. Therefore, this programme should be planned according to the method of early diagnosis and treatment. Mobile units can be used to go to primary health centres and check the newborns. Hearing tests can also be done during a child’s immunisation session,” Mr. Tope said.

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Printable version | Jul 25, 2021 4:21:06 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/pilot-project-to-check-for-deafness-in-newborns-in-maharashtra/article34844705.ece

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