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assurance procedures for accurate data entry. This position will also coordinate with other State agencies, such as the WIC Program and Medicaid, to locate families to decrease the number of children lost to follow-up.  The above positions form a cohesive team to work towards the goals as outlined in this application.

Technical support from OZ Systems and their State Program Coordinator is an asset to achieving data integrity.  The State Program Coordinator participates in data teleconferences, provides technical assistance to running reports, and problem solves data entry difficulties with birthing hospitals.  OZ initiated and is facilitating a user group for audiologists to simplify the process of entering assessment data by audiology.

Along with staff, a major asset and crucial partner of the Alaska EHDI Program are the dedicated members of the EHDI Advisory Committee.  At this time the committee formed a task force to examine the process from diagnosis to early intervention services.  A second task force was created to ensure timely follow-up of children with late onset/progressive hearing loss. With the recent release of the 2007 JCIH guidelines the group is proposing the development of a third task force to examine the State Audiological Assessment Guidelines.  The work of these three groups will result in an updated communication protocol for the Alaska EHDI Program reflecting the 2007 JCIH Guidelines.

Previously the EHDI Advisory Committee worked with the EHDI Program Manger to produce materials for parents on newborn hearing screening.  These materials are now available in six languages English, Spanish, Korean, Hmong, Tagalog and most recently, Russian.  These materials are continually distributed throughout the State to engage all parents in the EHDI system.

The EHDI Program has a contract with the Stone Soup Group, a parent organization, to provide parent navigation to families throughout the state.  This is achieved through travel, teleconferences, and email. A brochure on parent navigation was developed and is distributed to providers to promote the importance of parent support. The State partnership with the Stone Soup Group strengthens the EHDI system and its belief in parental choice and the families’ role as decision makers.

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