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U.S. Department of Education Releases New Brochure Outlining Options For Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Children

Denver, CO - May 31, 2005 - The U.S. Department of Education has issued a new brochure for parents explaining the full range of options, including cochlear implants, for deaf and hard-of-hearing children. This marks the first time the Department has published guidance on cochlear implants, implanted devices for severe to profoundly deaf individuals.

The brochure will improve the information provided to parents to help them make important decisions about their child's hearing health, said Donna L. Sorkin, Vice President, Consumer Affairs for Cochlear Americas, and an active advocate for early intervention in hearing health. It addresses the full range of options, including the benefits of cochlear implants for appropriate children, so that more parents will become aware of this remarkable technology. This guidance is a milestone on the path to early intervention, universal newborn hearing screenings, and broader insurance coverage of cochlear implants.

The brochure fulfills a policy directive from Congress issued as a result of the Congressional reauthorization of the Individuals With Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) in December 2004. IDEA provides access to services and education for families and children with special needs. Entitled Opening Doors: Technology and Communications Options for Children With Hearing Loss, the brochure is distributed by state early intervention programs and is on the U.S. Department of Education Web site.

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