Utah Schools for the Deaf and the Blind (USDB) dedicated a new mobile audiology clinic to the late Melvin Nielson during ribbon cutting ceremony on April 24.
Nielson, or Doc as he was known by many, was USDB’s first audiologist back in 1964. He had a vision of a mobile audiology clinic that could reach children in rural areas around the state and in the mid 70’s the first mobile clinic (affectionately known as The Twinkie) hit the road.
In honor of Doc’s years of service and dedication to the hearing needs of Utah children the mobile clinic was dedicated in his memory.
In 1998 the Utah Legislature recognizing the need for early intervention for hearing loss amended Utah code requiring that all newborn infants be tested for hearing loss. Currently 98 percent of newborns are screened which is wonderful news.
However, 55 percent of infants who do not pass their newborn hearing screening are not receiving follow-up screening and thus not receiving the interventions that they may need if they have a hearing loss.
In response to this situation, Dr. Michael Page, Manager of Pediatric Audiology/Cochlear Implant Program at Primary Children’s Hospital, has created the Pediatric Deaf and Hard of Hearing Collaborators’ Group.
Present at the event were members of the Advisory Council for USDB, the State School Board of Education, the Pediatric Deaf and Hard of Hearing Collaborators’ Group and family members of Melvin Nielson.