North Carolina Hosts National Conference on EHDI

Over 400 attendees from across the U.S. gathered in Raleigh, NC, October 26-28, for “EHDI: Partnering for Progress.” EHDI, an acronym for Early Hearing Detection and Intervention, refers to the broad spectrum of systems and services needed to enable newborn hearing screening, diagnosis, and treatment for congenital and early onset hearing loss.

North Carolina Hosts National Conference on EHDI
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Audiology students from UNC and from across the U.S. traveled to North Carolina in October to participate in EHDI: Partnering for Progress.

Hosted by UNC Chapel Hill in cooperation with the National Center for Hearing Assessment and Management (NCHAM) at Utah State University with support from the U.S. Maternal and Child Health Bureau, the meeting combined three conferences:  UNC’s fifth “Biennial Pediatric Audiology Symposium,” the sixth annual “Investing in Family Support Conference,” sponsored by NCHAM, and the fourth annual “Southeastern EHDI Conference,” sponsored by eight southeastern public health programs.

Those in attendance included professionals and parent leaders from across the U.S. and nearly 100 graduate students from 14 states and the District of Columbia.  Many of the student participants were LEND (Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental Disabilities) trainees who received travel grants from AUCD (Association of University Centers on Disabilities); others had funding from their universities or other sources.

“Combining the conferences enhanced all three meetings while providing valuable opportunities for interdisciplinary interaction and networking,” said Jack Roush, conference planning committee member and UNC Division of Speech and Hearing Sciences Director and Professor.

“The synergy and excitement created by bringing together audiologists, EHDI program staff, graduate students, and families was very valuable,” said NCHAM director Karl White.  “Participants left the meeting with great ideas, as well as new partners to help in implementing those ideas.”