Hearing and vision greatly impact your child’s ability to succeed in school. Undiagnosed hearing problems may impact a child’s ability to pay attention or follow directions, while undiagnosed vision problems may affect a child’s ability to read and learn.
The health department offers free hearing and vision screenings for all children at regular intervals, both prior to beginning school and throughout their school years. Screenings are available by appointment or a child may participate in the program when the technician visits their school.
While other community organizations provide free vision screening services, only those screenings provided by your local health department or a licensed eye care practitioner meet the Public Health Code criteria for preschool or school-age screening.
Children may be unaware that they hear things differently from their friends and family. Identifying hearing problems at an early age can alleviate delays in a child’s speech/language development, social/emotional functioning, and ability to learn.
Through the hearing and vision screening program, children are eligible for free screenings at least once between the ages of 3 and 5 years and every other year between the ages of 5 and 10 years. If a child demonstrates difficulty during the screening process, a referral is made to the child’s primary care provider office, pediatrician’s office, Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) physician’s office or audiologist’s office for follow up care.
As with hearing problems, many children are unaware that they see things differently than they should. Vision screening is important, especially early in a child’s life because many common vision problems can be corrected when caught early.
Children are eligible to participate in free vision screeings at least once between the ages of 3 and 5 years. Additionally, school-age children are screened in grades 1, 3, 5, 7 and 9, or in conjunction with driver training classes. If a child fails one or more of the battery of vision screening tests or has an observable symptom, the hearing and vision technician refers the child for follow up.
For additional information regarding the Hearing and Vision screening program, or to schedule an appointment, please call your local hearing and vision technician:
Baraga, Houghton, Keweenaw & Ontonagon Counties: call Carol Maki at 482-7382
Gogebic County: call DeAnna Schwartz at 667-0200