In 1992, a grassroots group of professionals and consumers created the Iowa Newborn Audiology Committee. They felt that Iowa infants and toddlers with hearing loss were not being identified as early as possible and thus missed out on meaningful language input during the critical period for language learning. The group approached the Iowa Department of Health and Human Services (Iowa HHS) in 1994 for assistance in meeting the need for early detection of hearing loss and entrance into early intervention programs for hearing-impaired children.
Iowa established a Newborn Hearing Screening Advisory Committee, which later became known as the Iowa Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Advisory Committee. The committee is composed of a multidisciplinary group from the health care community, including the Iowa Hospital Association, private practice audiologists, pediatricians, family practice physicians, and otolaryngologists. Also represented are members of the deaf community, parents of children with hearing loss, advocates, Early ACCESS (IDEA, Part C), Area Education Agencies, and other stakeholders that are affected by or involved with newborn hearing screening. The committee was designed to build partnerships and advise EHDI staff as we move toward establishing and implementing project goals. The committee has been and continues to be an integral part of our EHDI program.