The National Center for Evidence-Based Practice
in Communication Disorders
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Summary of Clinical Practice Guideline

National Health Care for the Homeless Council, Inc.

Adapting Your Practice: Treatment and Recommendations for Homeless Children with Otitis Media
Bernie, K., Creaven, B. K., et al. (2008).
Nashville (TN): Health Care for the Homeless Clinicians' Network, National Health Care for the Homeless Council, Inc., 29 pages.

AGREE Rating: Highly Recommended

Description:
This guideline provides recommendations for the treatment of homeless children with otitis media (OM). The primary audience for these guidelines is primary care clinicians; however, several recommendations are relevant to the field of speech-language pathology or audiology.

Recommendations:

Social Communication Disorders
  • Assessment/Diagnosis/Screening

    • Assessment Areas

      • Cognition/Language 

        • In regards to social development/behavior, inquire about the child’s interaction with family members and behavior at daycare/school, and explore possible causes of behavior problems besides hearing loss (stress, feeling ostracized, family violence) (p. vi). 

        • "Many homeless children have delayed social and verbal skills, which make it difficult to assess for speech delays. Refer to [a] speech therapist as needed." (p. 13). 

      • Hearing 

        • In regards to social development/behavior, inquire about the child’s interaction with family members and behavior at daycare/school, and explore possible causes of behavior problems besides hearing loss (stress, feeling ostracized, family violence) (p. vi). 

      • Speech

        • "Many homeless children have delayed social and verbal skills, which make it difficult to assess for speech delays. Refer to [a] speech therapist as needed." (p. 13).

    • Screening Areas

      • Hearing 

        • Screen hearing routinely and refer to an audiologist/ear, nose, and throat (ENT) specialist as needed since "secondary to multiple/chronic ear infections may affect [the] child’s attachment to parent(s) and emotional and social development" (p. vii).

  • Service Delivery

    • Provider

      • "Many homeless children have delayed social and verbal skills, which make it difficult to assess for speech delays. Refer to [a] speech therapist as needed." (p. 13).

Keywords:
Otitis Media

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