EFFECTIVENESS OF INITIAL SOLUTIONS INCORPORATED INTO EARLY INTERVENTION DELIVERY SYSTEMS FOR CHILDREN WITH HEARING LOSS: EVIDENCE FROM HAI PHONG, VIETNAM
Objective: Hearing loss is a serious disease that needs attention from society because of its considerable effects on the normal development of children. This study incorporated systematic solutions into early intervention delivery systems for children with hearing loss in Hai Phong, Vietnam, and evaluated the effectiveness of the strategies.
Methods: This community intervention study, which was carried out from 2013 to 2014, involved a comparison of the early intervention delivery systems before and after the implementation of the proposed solutions.
Results: Two years after the solutions were applied, the following results were derived: The availability of resources and the quality of service provision improved and access to and the use of services by families whose children suffer from hearing loss increased. The solutions also facilitated the creation of an early communal intervention program and significantly enhanced the situations of children with hearing loss as regards the average ages at which disease onset was suspected, the disease was definitively identified, hearing aid fitting was initiated, and language intervention was implemented (15.5, 21, 23.7, and 26.5 months, respectively). Finally, the solutions enabled detection, diagnosis, and early intervention at <12 and 24 months of age (p<0.001).
Conclusion: The strategy of reinforcing intervention programs with general and comprehensive solutions can be expanded to other Vietnamese provinces grappling with similar problems.
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