Early Hearing Detection and Intervention (EHDI) Program

Information for Health Professionals

Permanent congenital hearing loss (PCHL) is one of the most common conditions present in newborns. About two to three of every 1000 babies born will have PCHL. Based on 2015 birth numbers, this means about 115 and 170 babies are born in Alberta each year with permanent hearing loss.

Without screening, there are no obvious signs early on to tell if an infant has hearing loss. Over half of all infants identified with PCHL are healthy and have no family history of hearing loss.

The purpose of Alberta’s Early Hearing Detection and Intervention (EHDI) Program is to identify PCHL as early as possible and provide timely intervention to optimize language, development and overall health outcomes.

The EHDI Program goals (1-3-6) are to:

  • Screen infants for hearing loss by one month of age
  • Diagnose permanent hearing loss by three months of age
  • Ensure access to intervention by six months of age

Alberta’s EHDI Program is a provincial population-based screening program administered through AHS in partnership with Alberta Health and other key stakeholders.

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Information for Parents & Guardians