A. In this chapter, the following terms have the meanings indicated.
B. Terms Defined.
(1) “Alternative birthing site” means any site of birth other than a hospital.
(2) “Appropriate services” mean any necessary audiological, medical, developmental, speech-language, sign language, psychosocial, educational, or intervention services required in the follow-up of newborns and infants who have or are at risk for developing a permanent hearing status that affects speech-language skills.
(3) “At risk for developing a permanent hearing status that affects speech-language skills” means an infant identified as having any risk factor listed in Regulation .04 of this chapter.
(4) “Audiological assessment” means testing to determine status of the auditory mechanism.
(5) “Audiologist” means an individual licensed to practice audiology by the Maryland Board of Examiners for Audiologists, Hearing Aid Dispensers, and Speech-Language Pathologists.
(6) “Birthing hospital” means a medical facility licensed by the Department which provides obstetrical services.
(7) “Department” means the Maryland Department of Health.
(8) “Department database” means the computer data management system used to gather and maintain program data.
(9) “Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Advisory Council (Advisory Council)” means the 12-member advisory council appointed by the Secretary to provide advice and consultation to the Department concerning the Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Program.
(10) “Early intervention system” means the total effort in the State, for children from birth to 5 years of age, to meet the needs of eligible children and the children’s families, including the efforts of the Maryland Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Program.
(11) “Hearing screening” means behavioral, electrophysiological, or other procedures used to identify newborns and infants in need of diagnostic audiological assessment.
(12) “Hearing status” means the state of an individual’s ability to perceive sound, based on audiological assessment.
(13) “Infant” means a Maryland resident who is younger than 1 year old.
(14) “Infant with a permanent change in hearing status that affects speech-language skills” means an infant who has a status that is an atypical function of the auditory system or any nontransient hearing status of any type or degree which is sufficient to interfere with the acquisition and development of speech-language skills with or without the use of sound amplification.
(15) “Local education agency” means a public board of education and public school system legally constituted to administer and direct education and programs of education in the public elementary or secondary schools, including early childhood from birth through the end of high school or their equivalent, in Baltimore City and the 23 counties in Maryland.
(16) “Local health department” means the official public health agency of the local political subdivision affiliated with the Department.
(17) “Maryland Infants and Toddlers Program” means the program within the Maryland State Department of Education’s Division of Special Education/Early Intervention Services that provides early intervention services for children under Part C of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.
(18) “Newborn” means a child up to 29 days old who is born in the State.
(19) “Parent” means a biological or adoptive parent, a legal guardian, another individual responsible for a child’s welfare, or a person appointed as the surrogate parent as defined in COMAR 13A.05.01.
(20) “Primary care provider” means a licensed practitioner who is the primary coordinator of care for the individual, whose responsibility it is to provide accessible, continuous, comprehensive, and coordinated health care services.
(21) “Program” means the Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Program established by the Secretary that provides for the universal screening of newborns and early identification and follow-up of newborns and infants who have, or are at risk for developing, a permanent hearing status that affects speech-language skills.
(22) “Referral” means directing the newborn or infant at risk for developing a permanent hearing status that affects speech-language skills and the newborn or infant’s parent or guardian to a professional for diagnostic audiological assessment or other appropriate services, or both.
(23) “Risk factors” means indicators that are associated with permanent congenital, delayed-onset, or progression to a hearing status that affects speech-language skills in childhood.
(24) “Secretary” means the Secretary of Health and Mental Hygiene.
(25) “Telephone resource line” means toll-free telephone access to the Program inside Maryland through live voice or recorded message that is compatible with telecommunication relay services.