Hearing Program :: Nationwide Children's Hospital

Colton was born without his cochlear nerve. As a result, he was deaf in both ears. Because he is a healthy patient, Dr. Oliver Adunka recommended surgically implanting an electronic device directly on his brainstem. Colton had the implant placed and a few weeks later, our team activated it in clinic - it was a success. Now that his brain is registering sound, he is learning how to process it through speech therapy and regular follow-ups with the audiology team. Colton's best hope at developing spoken word is with this device and continued treatment with our Hearing Program.

Hearing Program

Once a child has been diagnosed with sensorineural hearing loss, the child’s family is often faced with questions and decisions they do not feel equipped to address. The Hearing Program at Nationwide Children’s offers a multidisciplinary team approach to supporting our patients and families navigate this process. Our mission is to provide families with evidence-based hearing and language care and lead advancements in research, education and training so that all children can achieve their full potential. We provide a family-centered visit where patients and families leave feeling educated and supported as they work to help their child with hearing loss.

During the appointment, each patient and family will meet with our team of experts: a pediatric otolaryngologist specializing in hearing loss, advanced practitioner nurse, audiologist, speech-language pathologist, social worker and registered nurse. Our team assesses and makes medical recommendations including further diagnostic testing, appropriate assistive listening devices and surgeries including cochlear implants. Parents are given information to connect resources in education and speech and language development.

The Hearing Program at Nationwide Children’s offers a variety of services including:

Hearing Clinic

Patients with sensorineural hearing loss are assessed by our team of hearing experts in this specialty clinic, including an otolaryngologist, audiologist, speech-language pathologist, registered nurse, social worker and the Hearing Program Coordinator. We offer hearing clinics at our main campus and Dublin Close To Home Center on Venture Dr.

Audiological Services

Our Audiology Department offers a full range of services for children of all ages. In addition to diagnostic testing, our audiologists are experts in pediatric hearing aids and cochlear implants.

Ear, Nose and Throat (Otolaryngology) Patient with a Cochlear Implant

Specialized Speech Therapy for Children with Hearing Loss

Therapy services address speech, language, and audition skills using the Auditory-Verbal approach. The Auditory-Verbal approach emphasizes the development of listening skills in order to help children learn to process and use spoken language as their primary form of communication. It is critical that parents attend therapy sessions in order to understand their child’s goals and learn how to target those goals at home. Children only spend one hour of their week in speech therapy; the rest of their time is with their family, so the parents’ role in creating a language-learning lifestyle is essential.

Cochlear Implant Team

Patients eligible for cochlear implant candidacy can be referred to our team of experts by their surgeon. Candidates receive evaluations by Development Pediatrics, Audiology, Speech-Language Pathology, Psychology, Occupational Therapy and Social Work.

Family Support

We offer these support options to parents of children with hearing loss.

Hearing Team Education Series

Educational sessions presented by an expert are offered quarterly, free-of-charge, with a topic of interest for parents and professionals. These lectures are also available for viewing on our website.

Ear, Nose and Throat (Otolaryngology) Patient Playing and Receiving Therapy

Parent to Parent Connections

We will gladly connect you to another parent of a child whose hearing loss is similar to your child’s. Many parents find this option to be very helpful.

  • Hearing Loss Support Group for Parents, Caregivers and Teens: These informal meetings will be roundtable discussions with a guest speaker from the community to support each discussion topic.
  • Annual Hearing Picnic: We also host an annual Hearing Clinic Picnic for families to meet and eat! In addition to the potluck style lunch, we have games, face painting, balloon animals, magic shows, and a visit from some of the Columbus Zoo mascots. Families seen in our Hearing Clinic will receive a save the date card in the mail.

For additional information on the Hearing Program at Nationwide Children's or to connect with support services, please contact Kim Davis, Hearing Program Coordinator, at (614) 722-2441.

Referrals to the specialty Hearing Clinic are simple. We do request a recent audiogram accompany your referral. Please make a referral by calling (614) 722-6200, faxing referrals to (614) 722-4000 or completing our online form.

Hearing Clinic Locations

featured video

Braxton turns four today. He received the best birthday gift anyone could get, the gift of hearing.

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Hearing Team Education Series

The Hearing Team Education Series is designed to discuss topics related to hearing loss for families in a relaxed, supportive atmosphere. Topics change from month to month and participants are invited to attend the sessions of their choice.

Learn more about this series »

In the News

Audiologist Jori Weingarten was featured in a Parents.com article on Caring for a Baby With Hearing Loss. The article explains what to expect and how to help your baby develop at his or her own pace.

Read the Parents.com article »

Member of the American Cochlear Implant (ACI) Alliance

Nationwide Children's Hospital
700 Children's Drive Columbus, Ohio 43205 614.722.2000