Presenter Information:
Presenter 1: Name: Janet DesGeorges
Janet DesGeorges lives in Colorado with her husband Joe. They are the parents of three daughters. Her youngest daughter, Sara, is hard of hearing. She is the Outreach Director with the national offices of Hands & Voices, a family support and advocacy organization, and is the Executive Director of Colorado Families for Hands & Voices, which has a membership of 1800. She has presented to groups nationwide and internationally about the experiences of families as they journey through life with a child with deafness or hearing loss. Ms. DesGeorges has been involved for many years with the implementation of Universal Newborn Hearing Systems in many states, advocating for strong parent participation in systems building, as well as advocating for educational excellence for children who are deaf and hard of hearing. Ms. DesGeorges is the co-author of a chapter on Educational Law for Deaf/hard of hearing students, and many other publications.
Presenter 2: Name: Terri Patterson
Terri Patterson, Georgia Hands & Voices, and her husband, Matt, are parents to Molly and Riley in the suburbs of Atlanta. Their son, Riley, was diagnosed with a bilateral profound sensorineural hearing loss at two months of age. From that point forward they have continued to learn, meet other families and dedicated professionals, and participate in committees and conferences. As Riley transitioned out of Georgia's Early Intervention program, Terri transitioned into the program as a Parent Educator. She serves on her district and state Universal Newborn Hearing task force, involved with the state EHDI program, has attended and spoken at the National Summit on Deaf Education and represents parents at many local, regional and national conferences. Terri is the President of Georgia Hands & Voices, moving forward with a group of dedicated parents and professionals to provide parent support.
Author Information:
Author 1: Name: Janet DesGeorges
Affiliation: Hands & Voices
Author 2: Name: Terri Patterson
Affiliation: GA Hands & Voices
Abstract Information:
Title: The Parent Decision Guide
Primary Track: 6-Family Issues
Keyword(s): communication, options, parents


The CDC (Center for Disease Control) hosts a parent-to-parent subcommittee that has developed a decision making guide based on the Ottowa Decision Guide. This tool was derived from the Ottowa Guide with the specific intention of supporting families through the process of making decisions about communication options when a child is identified to be deaf or hard of hearing. The communication options that families are faced with at the time of identification are often discussed as to WHAT they need to decide, but HOW families go about that decision is the basis for this project. It was developed by a coalition of parents and professionals with different types of background and choices for their own kids.
Presentation(s): Not Available
Handouts: Not Available