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Newborn Hearing Screening

All newborns in hospital and community settings will receive a universal hearing screening as part of the Infant Hearing Program.

Hearing screenings identify infants who should have more in-depth testing for hearing loss as early as possible and are only provided for infants under the age of two months.

Why Do We Screen Babies For Hearing Loss?

Hearing loss can affect the development of speech, language and social skills. The earlier the intervention, the more likely children are to reach their full potential.

Did you know: Two out of 1,000 babies have hearing loss at birth. Two more develop hearing loss by the age of five. These children may hear some sounds but miss others, making it harder to learn speech and language. Early detection and intervention is critical for a child’s language and literacy development.

How Is My Baby’s Hearing Screened?

The IHP performs a Hearing Screen and a Risk Factor Screen for your newborn:

Hearing Screen

Screening a baby’s hearing accurately requires special training and equipment. The screen is reliable, quick and gives results right away.

It measures the ear’s or brain’s response to soft sounds played in your baby’s ear and, if needed, may use small stickers placed on your baby’s head. The technology used for the hearing screen is safe and will not hurt your baby.

Risk Factor Screen

Using the same sample collected by the hospital or midwife for the newborn blood spot screening, Newborn Screening Ontario will also complete a risk factor screen to see if your baby is at higher risk for hearing loss. 

Referral Process and Criteria

Referral Process

If your newborn did not receive a hearing screening at birth, or their hearing screening indicated they should be referred to a community newborn hearing screening clinic, you can book online or call our scheduling team at 905-855-2690 ext. 4


A community hearing screening appointment should be scheduled for your baby if:

  • Your baby is between 0 – two months of age (or eight weeks corrected age if baby was born early)
  • Your baby did not receive a hearing screening at birth
  • Your baby's hearing screening at birth indicated they should be referred to a community newborn hearing screening clinic
  • Your baby was born in Ontario
  • You are currently living in the Central West Region of Ontario (Halton, Peel, Waterloo, Guelph-Wellington or Dufferin)

Book A Newborn Hearing Screening Now

Banner Image courtesy of Natus Medical Incorporated,