Using funding from a federal Maternal and Child Health Bureau Newborn Hearing Screening and Intervention grant, the California Department of Education will provide funding to three existing Parent Training and Information Centers or Family Resource Centers to fund a parent mentor to provide the following support to parents of infants and toddlers identified through the California Newborn Hearing Screening Program (NHSP). Referral to Family Resource Centers is a requirement of the California Early Intervention Act:
Contact families identified by the NHSP (one time) that fail to show for outpatient hearing screen appointments, to do the following:
- Find out and document (for program evaluation and quality improvement purposes) why the family failed to show for the appointment.
- Help the family solve issues that prevented them from keeping the appointment (e.g., by providing the parents with names of audiology providers close to their home).
- Stress the importance of making and keeping a new appointment.
- Answer any questions the family may have
Contact families identified by the NHSP (one time) when an infant is referred for diagnostic hearing evaluation, to do the following
- Talk with the family about what to expect at the diagnostic appointment.
- Talk about the importance of following through with the appointment.
- Talk about the authorization process for private insurance and/or California Children’s Services (CCS) for the diagnostic evaluation.
- Answer any questions the family may have.
- Give the parents the Parent Mentor’s name and phone number, so that the parents may call the Parent Mentor if they have questions or concerns.
Contact families of infants identified with hearing loss through the NHSP, and provide six to ten hours of services, which will include the following:
- Initiation of dialogue with the family about their needs.
- Provision of information about hearing loss.
- Provision of methodology respectful information about communication options.
- Demonstration of how to access information about options to start family on path to own research.
- Referral to Early Start, if the family is not already connected.
- Provision of information about Early Start and what kinds of services the family can expect to receive.
- Provision of information about Family Resource Centers (FRCs) and information about what to expect from the FRC.
- Connection to the local FRC.
- Connection with a local trained Key Parent and with California Hands & Voices for ongoing support.