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Proposed Data Collections Submitted for Public Comment and Recommendations

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In compliance with the requirement of Section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 for opportunity for public comment on proposed data collection projects, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will publish periodic summaries of proposed projects. To request more information on the proposed projects or to obtain a copy of the data collection plans and instruments, call the CDC Reports Clearance Officer on (404) 498-1210.

Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information shall have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology. Send comments to Seleda Perryman, CDC Assistant Reports Clearance Officer, 1600 Clifton Road, MS-E11, Atlanta, GA 30333. Written comments should be received within 60 days of this notice.

Proposed Project

Assessment of State Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Programs (EHDI): A Program Operations Evaluation Protocol—New—National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities (NCBDDD), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Every year, an estimated 12,000 newborns are diagnosed with permanent hearing loss, a condition that if not identified and treated early can lead to impaired functioning and development. CDC's role in the detection, diagnosis, and treatment of early hearing loss through the “Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Program” (EHDI) is of vital importance for families of newborns and infants affected by hearing loss. Nonetheless, recent data indicate that only 60 percent of the newborns that fail hearing screening are evaluated by the recommended 3 months of age.

This study aims to examine the policy, structural, personal, and financial factors and barriers associated with loss to follow-up and identify “best practices” for improving detection; referral to evaluation and intervention; and adherence to intervention. Data from this evaluation will be used to improve EHDI programs across the nation.

The evaluation will involve an integrative evaluation approach that encompasses the following activities, conducted in Arkansas, Massachusetts, Michigan, Utah, and Virginia: (1) a 10-minute survey of 3,000 mothers whose newborns have been screened (the “Maternal Exit Survey”); and (2) a 20-minute computer-assisted telephone interviewing (CATI) survey of 1,000 mothers of newborns who have been referred for additional hearing evaluation (the “Maternal CATI Interview”). The Maternal Exit Survey and the Maternal CATI Interview will address the following research questions: (1) What are the factors that impede or enable families to follow-up for early hearing evaluation and intervention; (2) What EHDI strategies implemented by hospitals appear to be most successful in reducing loss to follow-up; and (3) Is loss to follow-up associated with maternal characteristics such as parity, age or ethnicity? Both surveys will be available in English and Spanish.

Hearing loss is the most common disorder that can be detected through newborn screening programs. Prior to the implementation of newborn hearing screening, children with hearing loss typically were not identified until 2 to 3 years of age. This is well beyond the period of early language development. Now, with comprehensive EHDI programs, the average age of identification of children with hearing loss has been reduced so that it is now possible to provide interventions for Start Printed Page 20880children younger than one year of age. With early identification, children with hearing loss can begin receiving appropriate intervention services that provide the best opportunity for these children to reach their maximum potential in such areas as language, communication, social and emotional development, and school achievement.

Newborn hearing screening is only the first step in the identification of children with hearing loss. Children who do not pass their screening need to be further evaluated to determine if they have hearing loss. The value of newborn hearing screening cannot be realized unless children complete the screening, evaluation, and intervention process. Since recent data indicate that nearly 40 percent of children do not complete the evaluation-intervention process, this project is designed to understand what barriers exist to following through with evaluation and intervention. This evaluation also plans to provide data necessary to develop innovative solutions that can be applied by states, hospitals, and local programs. Results from this collection have the potential to strengthen the EHDI process and minimize social and economic disability among persons born with hearing loss.

By evaluating the policy, structural, personal, and financial factors and barriers associated with loss to follow-up in the EHDI program, this study seeks to identify “best practices” for improving detection, referral to evaluation and intervention, and adherence to intervention. CDC's plan to publish data and results from this evaluation will help state health officials, other federal agencies, and other stakeholders to improve the EHDI process-providing direct benefit to infants with hearing loss and their families.

InstrumentNumber of respondentsResponses per respondentAverage burden per response (hrs)Total burden (hrs)
Maternal Exit Survey3,000110/60500
Maternal CATI Interview1,000120/60333
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Dated: April 9, 2004.

Diane Allen,

Acting Director, Management Analysis and Services Office, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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[FR Doc. 04-8756 Filed 4-16-04; 8:45 am]