Early and Continuous Screening

Early and continuous screening is intended to identify children with special health care needs as early as possible so families can receive appropriate services to address those needs. Continuous screenings also help identify and prevent secondary conditions that interfere with a child’s development and well-being.


According to the 2009-10 National Survey of Children with Special Health Care Needs (NS-CSHCN), 66.8 percent of North Dakota children with special health care needs were screened early and continuously for special health care needs compared to 78.6 percent at the national level. 

Resources: ND Specific - North Dakota Specific Website

Early Hearing Detection and Intervention or Hearing Loss

  • National Center on Hearing Assessment and Management (NCHAM) serves as the National Technical Resource Center for all state-based Early Hearing Detection and Intervention (EHDI) programs in the United States. Their goal is to ensure that all infants and toddlers with hearing loss are identified as early as possible and provided with timely and appropriate audiological, educational and medical intervention. 
  • National Center for Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities (NCBDDD) houses the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Early Hearing Detection and Intervention (EHDI) Program, which works with states and territories to ensure that infants are screened for hearing loss no later than one month of age, infants who do not pass the screening for hearing loss get a full hearing evaluation no later than 3 months of age, and infants with a hearing loss receive intervention services no later than 6 months of age. When a child’s hearing loss is identified soon after birth, families and professionals can make sure the child gets timely follow-up testing and intervention services at an early age. This will help the child develop communication and language skills that will last a lifetime.
  • ND Specific ND Early Hearing Detection and Intervention (ND EHDI) works to provide hearing screenings to all newborns in the state before hospital discharge and to refer those identified with a hearing loss to appropriate early intervention services. 

Newborn Screening

  • National Center for Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities (NCBDDD) houses the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Newborn Screening Program, which promotes that all babies are screened, even if they look healthy, because some medical conditions cannot be seen by just looking at the baby. Finding these conditions soon after birth can help prevent some serious problems, such as brain damage, organ damage and even death.
  • ND SpecificNorth Dakota Department of Health Newborn Screening Program’s purpose is to test all newborns in North Dakota for early signs of a number of treatable disorders, as mandated by the North Dakota Century Code and the Agency Rules.

Vision Screening

  • Infant See´┐Ż is a public health program designed to ensure early detection of eye conditions in babies. Member optometrists provide a comprehensive eye and vision assessment for infants within the first year of life regardless of a family’s income or access to insurance coverage. 

Developmental Screening/Autism Screening

  • Developmental Monitoring and Screening - a child’s growth and development are kept track of through a partnership between the parent and the health professional. At each well-child visit, the doctor looks for developmental delays or problems and discusses any concerns the parent might have. This is called developmental monitoring (or surveillance). Any problems noticed during developmental monitoring should be followed-up with developmental screening.
  • “Learn the Signs. Act Early” is a campaign that aims to educate parents about childhood development, including early warning signs of autism and other developmental disorders, and encourages developmental screening and intervention.
  • Preventative well-child visits - The American Academy of Pediatrics developed a set of comprehensive health supervision guidelines for well-child care, called Bright Futures, for pediatricians to follow. Its mission is to promote and improve the health, education, and well-being of infants, children, adolescents, families and communities. Well-child care gives the parent an opportunity to raise questions and concerns about their child’s development, behavior and general well-being. 

Title V/Maternal and Child Health State Performance Measure Fact Sheet

ND SpecificThe North Dakota Department of Health’s Maternal and Child Health Services Title V Block Grant Program has placed priority on comprehensive screening, assessment and treatment for the MCH population. For more information on Title V efforts, see ND's state performance measure fact sheet .