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.

Services We Offer 

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. Our clinic is located on the main campus.

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.

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.

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.

Our Team

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.