Pediatric (Re)Habilitation, Therapy and Outreach Services
The Listen For Life Center at Virginia Mason® provides
comprehensive hearing loss related services, including essential (re)
habilitation and educational outreach, to meet the unique needs of children with
hearing loss. Whether a child is using a hearing aid, has a cochlear implant,
and/or is using an assistive listening device, The Listen For Life Center staff
strives to ensure that each child is receiving maximum benefit from their
The audiologists and speech-language pathologists work with children, their families and their schools to optimize the child's use of their residual amplified hearing. Children and their families come to The Listen For Life Center with different goals. We strive to provide family-centered care that addresses the specific needs of each child in relation to that child's mode of communication and educational placement and device.
The (Re) Habilitation Team at The Listen For Life Center offers the following services in order to provide comprehensive care to our pediatric patients:
Speech and language evaluations are available for children regardless of their hearing status or amplification system. Many children with newly identified hearing loss or newly fit amplification may undergo a speech-language evaluation as part of their comprehensive audiologic care. Additionally, children who are candidates for cochlear implantation receive speech-language evaluations as part of the pre-cochlear implant multi-disciplinary evaluation process. Children receiving speech-language and/or habilitation services at The Listen For Life Center receive annual speech-language evaluations to track and measure progress and identify areas of continued need.
Speech and language therapy is available for children with or without hearing loss to address delays in the areas of language understanding, language expression, speech development, social communication and voice and resonance issues. Our pediatric speech-language pathologist is highly trained and experienced in the needs of infants, toddlers, preschoolers and school age children with developmental issues and in the specific needs of children with hearing loss. All speech-language services for children using amplification such as hearing aids or assistive devices are closely coordinated with the child's managing audiologist.
Cochlear Implant Habilitation
When a child receives a cochlear implant, they must learn to hear, understand and meaningfully use the new auditory information they are receiving. A cochlear implant provides auditory sensations that are either brand-new to the child or are different compared to the sounds provided by hearing aids. Cochlear implant habilitation involves parent-participation sessions designed to help families learn the necessary skills to incorporate listening into the child's everyday life. These sessions are closely coordinated with the child's cochlear implant audiology services in order to assure optimal programming and/or MAPping of the device based on the child's unique skills and needs.
Educational Support Services
Audiologists and speech-language pathologists from The Listen For Life Center are eager to exchange information and collaborate with the child's educational professionals including teachers, teachers of the hearing-impaired, school-based audiologists and speech-language pathologists, aides, and other support staff. Professionals from The Listen For Life Center are available to attend the child's Individualized Education Plan (IEP) meetings or Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) meetings. Support services include school visits to observe the child's environment and/or providing in-service training to school personnel regarding hearing loss, use of hearing aids and/or cochlear implants, and related accessories and assistive devices. Using a collaborative approach with the child's school staff, guidance is provided as needed to help establish appropriate listening, signing and/or talking goals for your child.