Maine Revised Statutes

§8822. Program requirements

1. Definitions.  As used in this chapter, unless the context indicates otherwise, the following terms have the following meanings.
A. "Birth admission" means the time after birth that the newborn remains in the hospital nursery prior to discharge. [1999, c. 647, §2 (NEW).]
B. "Board" means the Newborn Hearing Screening Advisory Board. [1999, c. 647, §2 (NEW).]
C. "Hearing loss" means a hearing loss of 30 decibels or more in the frequency region important for speech recognition and comprehension in one or both ears. The department may adopt rules to decrease the amount of decibels of hearing loss as technology allows for detection of hearing loss of 15 to 25 decibels in one or both ears. [1999, c. 647, §2 (NEW).]
D. "Intervention" or "treatment" means the early intervention services described in the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, 20 United States Code, Chapter 33, Subchapter III, Sections 1431 to 1445, as amended. "Intervention" or "treatment" includes, but is not limited to, audiological, medical or early educational services that provide a choice of methods of communication in a variety of sensory modalities. [1999, c. 647, §2 (NEW).]
E. "Parent" means a natural parent, stepparent, adoptive parent, legal guardian or other legal custodian of a child. [1999, c. 647, §2 (NEW).]
F. "Person who is culturally deaf" means a person with permanent hearing loss who identifies as a member of the deaf community and who utilizes American Sign Language as the primary mode of communication. [1999, c. 647, §2 (NEW).]
G. "Person who is hard-of-hearing" or "person who is deaf" means a person with permanent hearing loss who communicates using aural or oral skills for accessing spoken language. [1999, c. 647, §2 (NEW).]
[ 1999, c. 647, §2 (NEW) .]
2. Information to parents of children born in hospitals.  Beginning November 1, 2000, a hospital shall provide information to the parents of children born in the hospital regarding the importance of screening the hearing of newborns and of receiving follow-up care. The information must explain the process of hearing screening, the likelihood of a child having a hearing loss, follow-up procedures and community resources and must include a description of the normal auditory, speech and language development process in children. The hospital must provide information about hearing screening that may be provided at the hospital or coordinated, scheduled or arranged for by the hospital. The program must provide this information prior to discharge from the birth admission to the hospital or within 3 months of discharge.
[ 1999, c. 647, §2 (NEW) .]
3. Information to parents of children born outside of hospitals.  By November 1, 2002, when a newborn is delivered in a facility other than a hospital, the department shall provide information to the parents on the merits of having the hearing screening performed and on the availability of the hearing screening within 3 months of the date of birth.
[ 1999, c. 647, §2 (NEW) .]
4. Guidelines for services for children with hearing loss and at-risk children.  The department, after consultation with the board, shall establish guidelines for the provision of follow-up services for newborn children in the State who are identified as having or being at risk of developing hearing loss. These services must include, but are not limited to, diagnostic audiologic assessment, counseling and educational services for the parents and an explanation of the potential effects of the identified hearing loss on the development of the newborn's speech, language and cognitive skills as well as the potential benefits of early identification and use of spoken or sign language.
[ 1999, c. 647, §2 (NEW) .]
4-A. Follow-up appointment with an audiologist.  Upon the approval of a parent or legal guardian of a newborn who is screened and receives a screening result of "refer," the birthing hospital, birthing center, hospital or other medical facility in which the child was screened must schedule the newborn for a follow-up appointment with an audiologist. That follow-up appointment must be scheduled prior to discharge, when possible. The hospital, center or facility must notify the newborn's primary care provider in writing of the screening result and audiologist appointment. This notice must be prepared prior to discharge, when possible.
[ 2007, c. 646, §1 (NEW) .]
5. Reporting.  Beginning January 1, 2003, every hospital and other location providing birthing services shall report annually to the department concerning the following:
A. The number of newborns born in the hospital or location, the number screened at birth admission and the number of newborns who passed and did not pass the screening; [1999, c. 647, §2 (NEW).]
B. The number of newborns and infants who participated in follow-up rescreening at that hospital or location and the number who passed the rescreening; [1999, c. 647, §2 (NEW).]
C. The number of newborns recommended for monitoring, intervention and follow-up care; [1999, c. 647, §2 (NEW).]
D. The number of newborns and infants recommended for diagnostic audiologic evaluation; and [1999, c. 647, §2 (NEW).]
E. The number of newborns whose parents declined screening. [1999, c. 647, §2 (NEW).]
[ 1999, c. 647, §2 (NEW) .]
6. Application.  The requirements of this section apply to all hospitals licensed under this Title and to other locations providing birthing services.
[ 1999, c. 647, §2 (NEW) .]
1999, c. 647, §2 (NEW). 2007, c. 646, §1 (AMD).