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Guthrie, Matsui Applaud House Passage of Early Hearing Bill

Washington, DC, October 3, 2017

Washington, DC– Congressman Brett Guthrie (KY-02), vice chair of the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s Subcommittee on Health, and Congresswoman Doris Matsui (CA-06) today applauded House passage of the Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Act of 2017 (S. 652). Guthrie and Matsui, along with Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) and Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA), introduced the Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Act earlier this year to reauthorize a program for early detection, diagnosis, and intervention in cases where newborns and young children are identified as deaf or hard-of-hearing.

“House passage of the Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Act is a huge win for children and families,” said Congressman Guthrie. “By catching hearing loss early, families can receive information on best practices related to preventing further damage. I was proud to introduce this bill to reauthorize the newborn screening program, which has shown itself to be a proven success already, and which raised the percentage of newborn babies screened for hearing loss from 40 in 2000 to 97 percent in 2015. I’m excited to see the president sign this bill into law soon to keep up the program’s record of success.”

“This program exemplifies the importance of early detection and intervention,” said Congresswoman Matsui. “By ensuring that infants have access to hearing screenings at birth, parents can make informed choices about their care management early on. This is critically important, given that so much of a child’s development happens in the first few years of their life. I’m pleased that through the passage of this legislation, the newborn screening and intervention program can continue to improve health outcomes for kids.”