Title: 'Developing the Early Hearing Detection and Intervention (EHDI) Program in the Federated States of Micronesia'
Track: 1 - EHDI Program Enhancement
Keyword(s): Pacific Islands EHDI Development
Learning Objectives:
  1. Describe the challenges Pacific islands face in providing newborn hearing screening to the 4 FSM states.
  2. Understand how a highly culturally and linguistically diverse population coordinate services and support to infants with hearing loss
  3. Examine the data from the FSM-EHDI project over the last 2 year and observe accomplishments in newborn hearing screening and follow up in FSM.


Early detection of hearing loss in newborn infants is an international initiative to identify newborns and intervene early in life to improve health and education outcomes for young children. The United States has funded the Early Hearing Detection and Intervention (EHDI) project since the 1990s to support newborn hearing screening and follow up. The EHDI program is a prevention initiative and requires changes in standard operating procedures in the management of newborn infants at the birth site and prior to discharge. An EHDI program requires health professionals to become skilled in the use of new technology to assess newborn infant hearing and needed follow up services. This paper describes how FSM initiated and established their EHDI program. It describes how the far flung islands that compose the FSM integrated newborn hearing screening into the standard of care for all babies born in the FSM. The FSM-EHDI hearing screening data for newborns and the number of infants identified with hearing loss from 2009 to 2012 are presented. Contributing variables to success include, staff commitment, team work, problem solving, monitoring progress through data trend analyses, and maintaining collaborative partnerships with parents and the Special Education Early Childhood program. FSM’s success in integrating newborn hearing screening is validated by comparison of performance in 2010 and 2011. Improvements continue to be needed, particularly in the area of timeliness of services to conform to 1-3-6 recommended practice. The success of the FSM demonstrates how obstacles can be overcome and differences made in the quest for healthy outcomes for newborn infants in the FSM.
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Anamaria Yomai - Co-Presenter
FSM Department of Health and Social Affairs
     Credentials: M.D. Pediatrician FSM National EHDI Champion
     Other Affiliations: Chuuk State Hospital
      Dr. Anamaria Yomai serves as the FSM-EHDI National Champion and is a pediatrician in her home state of Chuuk, FSM. She is also in charge of the FSM Children With Special Health Care Needs Program in the FSM Department of Health & Social Affairs.

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Dionis Saimon - Co-Presenter
FSM Department of Health and Social Affairs
     Credentials: B.S.
      Dionis Saimon is the FSM-EHDI Coordinator and served in this position since the EHDI program was first funded in 2009.

Financial - No relevant financial relationship exist.

Nonfinancial - No relevant nonfinancial relationship exist.
Velma Sablan - POC,Co-Presenter
University of Guam-Guam CEDDERS
     Credentials: Ph.D.
     Other Affiliations: FSM-EHD Project
      Dr. Velma Sablan is a tenured full professor of Foundations and Educational Research at the University of Guam, School of Education. She has served as the project evaluator to the Guam CEDDERS/Guam EHDI project since 2003 and to the FSM-EHDI project since 2008. She is the mother of 2 sons and grandmother to a grandaughter and 2 grandsons.

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Stanley Mickey - Co-Presenter
Department of Health and Social Affairs
     Credentials: Stanley serves as the Assistant EHDI Coordinator for the FSM-EHDI project.
      Stanley Mickey is the co-coordinator for the FSM-EHDI project. He has served in this capacity since 2008.

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