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Scottish babies all ears for good news on healthcare

New born babies in Scotland are to benefit from a new national programme aimed at identifying hearing problems, thanks to NHS Scotland and Northgate Information Solutions.

Permanent hearing problems affect around 60-65 babies in Scotland each year. Early intervention is crucial to ensure that both baby and parents receive the essential services needed to reduce the risk of ongoing educational and social problems.

Northgate will provide a single online information infrastructure which will allow clinicians to effectively manage screening and follow-up services. This will ensure that Scottish Health Boards are able to share information and work together more efficiently. Northgate was chosen by NHS Scotland following trials at two pilot sites – Lothian and Tayside.

The partnership between Northgate and the Scottish Newborn Hearing Screening Programme will ensure:

• that all newborn babies in Scotland are screened;
• babies can be tracked through the system even where cross-border screening is required;
• a single robust and resilient system, consistent with the rest of the UK;
• access, availability and support of the system is provided in a uniform manner to all sites.


Dave Meaden, Managing Director, Northgate Public Services, said today:

“We are delighted to be working with NHS Scotland and all the Scottish Health Boards to help them give every baby in Scotland the best possible start to life. Making sure that hearing problems are identified as early as possible is essential in ensuring that children’s development is not adversely affected.

“The national system announced today will deliver a proven solution that is already benefiting families in England and will go on to benefit families in Scotland too.”


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For more information:

Fellows’ Associates:
Kathy Sutton 020 7849 3403 / 07966 890401
Vincenzo Rampulla 020 7849 3489 / 07930 566291