Med Center Health offering hearing services during other facility’s closure

BOWLING GREEN, Ky.- When it comes to children needing hearing treatments, Med Center Health in Bowling Green is offering a helping hand.

Newborns at Med Center Health are given hearing screenings to detect any problems early on. Originally, newborns needing follow up treatments due to a hearing diagnosis would be sent to the Commission for Children with Special Health Care needs office in Bowling Green.

Due to COVID-19, that office isn’t seeing patients. That’s where audiologists at Med Center Health like Kelly Daniel come in.

“We recognized that the local facility here was not currently seeing patients, and they were getting quite a big backlog of infants that needed to be tested,” Daniel said.

To help with that backlog, Med Center Health is now offering that follow up service at their home facility. A service normally not offered.

“We as a team just decided that we could start doing those newborn follow ups here in our office, and hopefully bridge that gap for families and get that diagnosis prior to three months if a hearing loss was present,” Daniel said.

The audiologists have the equipment ready for these follow up operations. One of the goals is to ensure that the other facility isn’t trying to catch up when it comes time to seeing patients again.

“We were trying to not only get those kids diagnosed early, but also get rid of their backlog. When they do start providing services, it will take them a long time to catch up on 60 or 80 babies that need to be tested. It will also decrease the amount of children that might need testing with sedation unnecessarily,” Daniel said.

While Daniel said she thought the added step would be chaotic, she’s glad to know that everything is running quite well.

“When we first started talking about it, I said it’ll either go wonderfully, or it’ll be a major disaster, just because it was new. It’s actually gone very very smooth,” Daniel said.

The office for children with special needs is beginning to re-open, but an exact date is not known as of now.