The ability to hear and see is a main key to a child's success. An undiagnosed hearing or vision problem may interfere with a child's development. Early detection and treatment of hearing and vision problems can help children succeed in school.
Michigan Public Health Code (law) requires screening during pre-school age children. The law requires hearing and vision screening prior to kindergarten entry.
Once a child is in school, free screenings continue on a regular basis and are conducted by a Michigan Department of Health & Human Services trained technician
Hearing & Vision Screening services are available locally at the Sanilac County Health Department
Call: 810-648-4098 ext. 196
Hearing & Vision
The goal of the Hearing Screening Program is to identify hearing loss in children as early as possible in order to help reduce preventable hearing loss or ear disease and initiate necessary steps to alleviate and reduce the trauma of hearing loss.
Children of preschool and school age are screened for hearing problems at regular intervals by a Michigan Department of Health & Human Services (MDHHS) training technician.
The screenings are conducted in the schools and by appointment at the Sanilac County Health Department. School hearing screenings are provided annually to children in preschool, kindergarten, and grades second and fourth. A limited number of hearing screenings may be provided at the health department during the summer months.
Any other children age three or older, who are referred to the program by a parent, teacher, or school nurse because of a suspected hearing problem, will also be screening.
When a child does not pass a hearing screening, the child will be referred to a family physician or an Ear, Nose, and Throat (ENT) Specialist. Your physician may prescribe medicine or make a referral to an Audiologist.
Good hearing in children is essential to normal development. Undetected and untreated hearing loss affect your child’s:
Speech and language development
The goal of the Vision Screening Program is to identify children with vision problems and assure referral to eye care professionals. Children often enter school with vision problems because they are unaware that they see differently. Early identification of an eye problem is important. Conditions such as amblyopia, or lazy eye, can be prevented if detected and treated during preschool years.
Children of preschool and school age are screened for vision problems at regular intervals by a Michigan Department of Health & Human Services trained vision technician. The screenings are conducted in the schools and by appointment at the Sanilac County Health Department. Vision screening of preschool children are conducted at least once between the ages of three to five years, and school-age children are screened in grades first, third, fifth, and seventh and in conjunction with driver training classes. A limited number of vision screenings may be provided at the health department during the summer months.
Any other children age three or older, who are referred to the program by a parent, teacher, or school nurse because of a suspected vision problem, will also be screened. At initial testing and/or retesting, children who are unable to pass one or more exercises, which screen for muscle imbalance, clearness of vision, farsightedness, and symptoms of eyesight problems are referred to an eye doctor of the family’s choice. Impaired vision in children can seriously impede learning and can contribute to development of emotional and behavioral problems.
Some common visual defects are:
Amblyopia: also known as “lazy eye”, caused by misalignment of child’s eyes such as crossed eyes
Unequal vision: one eye focusing better than the other
Errors in Refraction: blurred vision
Astigmatism: distorted vision
Frequently Asked Questions:
How much does the service cost?
This is a free service provided by the Sanilac County Health Department.
What causes a child to have problems with hearing?
The most common causes are wax buildup in the ears, fluid in ears, or a foreign object.
What should I do if my child does not pass the screening?
The first step would to have an exam by your health care provider. If the problem persists, your health care provider may consider referring to an ear, nose, and throat (ENT) specialist. You also have the option of having your child retested at the Sanilac County Health Department before seeking medical treatment.
What if affordability is a concern for a follow-up?
Please contact the Health Department technician as there are resources available for assistance.
For further information click here to visit the Michigan Department of Health & Human Services website.