Mumbai, September 22, 2022: GenWorks, India’s leading digital medical and healthcare solution provider, has launched the Echo-Screen testing procedure to save babies from ‘invisible’ hearing impairment at an early stage.
Most often, parents fail to notice hearing disabilities in children compared to other birth deformities. The late diagnosis starts affecting their foundations of vocabulary and language. But Echo-Screen, powered by otoacoustic emission technology, analyses a baby’s hearing ability by sending sound signals of different frequencies to the eardrums through earphones. The machine then picks up and evaluates the response for any hearing defects.
The entire Echo-Screen testing procedure is over in less than ten minutes. To get the best results, the test is run when the baby is asleep in a quiet and closed room.
Dr. Anuj Grover, Consultant, Neonatologist & Director, Setu Newborn Care Centre, Ahmedabad, does five Echo-Screen tests every day. He said, “Nobody can tell whether a child can hear properly or not in the first few days of life. But with the help of Echo-Screen, we can tell fairly accurately if the child is able to hear properly or not. If the machine says ‘pass’ after analysis, the child can hear properly, but if it says ‘refer,’ we have to redo the test in a couple of weeks.
“This technology is valuable as it can tell if a child can listen to a range of sounds. Often when we tell parents that they need to do this test, they will tell us that their child can hear properly because the baby has responded to loud sounds. They don’t realize that the child is reacting to loud sounds, which is very different from a normal conversation. A child must be able to hear tiny whispers,” added Dr. Grover.
Mr. Ganesh Prasad, Founder, MD & CEO, GenWorks, said, “Hearing is core to speech and brain development for a newborn. Screening is a fundamental and crucial protocol for assessment, especially for premature ones. Technology can help make this easier to adopt and deliver care to newborns. At GenWorks, we bring the best in class solutions across clinical care areas, and Echo-Screen is a proven technology for newborn screening that is easy to use while delivering accurate results keeping the newborn’s safety in mind.’’
The UN health agency estimates that up to five in every 1,000 infants have severe to profound hearing impairment. In India, over 27,000 children are born deaf every year.