A new, free-to-access online Listening Check set to help Australian parents and caregivers check for possible signs of hearing loss in children has been launched – marking Hearing Awareness Week (1-7 March) and World Hearing Day (3 March).
The Shepherd Centre’s Listening Check enables parents and caregivers to check a child’s functional listening by answering a set of simple questions. The Listening Check provides insights into how an individual listens in natural environments and settings, by using everyday scenarios and simple language in the questions.
The online Listening Check has been adapted from The Functional Listening Index – Paediatric® (FLI-P) tool which was developed by The Shepherd Centre working in partnership with the HEARing CRC and Cochlear Limited. The Listening Check online tool was developed by The Shepherd Centre and technology development firm Metarouge, to help Australian families identify whether their child may be impacted by hearing loss. The Listening Check is available at: listeningcheck.shepherdcentre.org.au
Aleisha Davis, General Manager of Clinical Programs at The Shepherd Centre, said that the Listening Check will help highlight the importance of listening in children’s development, and the impact that hearing loss can have on this. With increased awareness it is hoped that hearing loss in children doesn’t go unnoticed and parents can be equipped with all the information needed to ensure their child reaches their potential.
“We know that for every child with hearing loss receiving the necessary support, there is another child who isn’t, impacting their ability to develop essential speech, language and social skills that will give them the best possible start in life,” said Ms Davis.
“The online Listening Check aims to support parents and caregivers in being proactive when it comes to acting on concerns with listening development so they can begin early intervention support as soon as possible. The launch of the Listening Check is a positive step forward in making sure all Australian children with hearing loss or listening difficulties receive the support they need,” said Ms Davis.