Hearing Impairment (HI)
Learning about Hearing Impairment in Vietnam
At Children's Hospital 1 (CH1) in Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC), staff in the Rehabilitation Unit are doing all they can to support children (and their families) who are diagnosed with a Hearing Impairment (HI). They are highly motivated, and know only too well that there is strong evidence to show that early diagnosis of HI and effective intervention have a dramatic impact on children's development.
Nonetheless, with over 180,000 children under the age of 18 living with a hearing impairment in Vietnam (most with a profound hearing loss) and over 5,000 children already presenting to the hospital's crowded Outpatient Department every day, the challenge is to find sustainable ways to make long-term inroads into the preventable disability that these children currently experience. Prevention and early diagnosis (Newborn Screening for hearing loss) are gold standards that are being explored nationally, but in the meantime empowering families is high on the agenda.
A New Club at CH1!
In December 2010 Children's Hospital 1 in HCMC, Vietnam held their first HI Club, and 42 families attended (report coming soon!).
The second HI Club meeting for CH1 is planned for March 2011. CH1 staff are committed to collaborating with a variety of stakeholders to make a difference to the children and families. They recognise that as primary caregivers parents are the most important people in a child's life, and the HI Clubs are a chance for people to come together and learn about the best ways to help their children lead happy, healthy and fulfilling lives.
One organisation that is doing more to help children in Vietnam is the Global Foundation for Children with Hearing Loss - exciting to see the international community unite for the children in this way! See their video here.
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