MESC kicks off national hearing screening initiative

The Ministry of Education, Sports, and Culture (MESC) is thrilled to announce the forthcoming National Hearing Screening initiative, set to benefit all Year 1 students across our nation’s schools.
This visionary program is the result of collaboration between the Ministry of Health – ENT Unit, MESC Inclusive Education Unit, and esteemed partners, including SENESE Hearing Service, Samoa Blind Person Association, Samoa Association of
Sign Language Interpreters, and Loto Taumafai Society for People with Disabilities.
• Why Hearing Screening Important:
In the educational journey of every child, hearing plays a pivotal role. The ability to hear and comprehend the teacher’s instructions is fundamental to effective learning within a classroom environment.
Unfortunately, hearing loss can present a significant barrier, even in mild cases, particularly within noisy classrooms.
This can hinder a child’s capacity to keep pace with their peers, leading to misconceptions about their academic abilities and potential behavioural issues. Such misunderstandings can have long-lasting repercussions on a child’s self-esteem, employability, and social interactions.
The Purpose of the Hearing Screening:
The Primary goal of this program is to identify any potential hearing issues or ear-related concerns in children, and if necessary, provide immediate treatment and recommendations for follow-up care.
The services offered during this program may include:
1. Ear Suctioning: In this event that ear discharge is detected, our healthcare professionals may perform ear suctioning to remove the blockage safety and effectively.
2. Impacted Ear Wax Removal: If impacted earwax is identified as a concern, our trained nursing staff will perform safe and gentle earwax removal procedures to address the issue.
3. Prescriptions for Medicines: Should your child require medications following the screening, our medical team will prescribe appropriate medicines and provide guidance on their usage.
Early detection of hearing challenges can be transformative in a student’s academic journey.
The National Hearing Screening project holds the potential to dramatically enhance the hearing outcomes of Samoan children, thereby positively impacting their education and future employability. We believe that equal access to education is a fundamental right for all children.
By addressing hearing concerns early on, we are taking a significant step towards ensuring that no child is left behind due to hearing loss.
The National Hearing Screening initiative will commence on 18th September and run over the course of two weeks, covering schools in both Upolu and Savai’i.