Our ProgramProfessionals at the USC Caruso Family Center for Childhood Communication in Los Angeles offer comprehensive assessments to determine the type and degree of hearing loss a child of any age may have, fit sensory devices including hearing aids and cochlear implants and assess and facilitate the development of communication skills. Comprehensive services offered by clinical staff members include pediatric audiology, speech-language pathology and auditory verbal therapy, and educational counseling and guidance. Faculty members include scientists engaged in studies focusing on auditory development and disorders in children.
Children with hearing loss using cochlear implants and/or hearing aids may be eligible for participation in one or more of the center’s research programs. These include innovative approaches to studying the functions and development of the inner ear, longitudinal studies following the developmental abilities of children with hearing loss and literacy intervention for young children with hearing loss. The Los Angeles Pediatric ABI Project is composed of scientists and clinicians from Keck Medicine of USC, Children’s Hospital Los Angeles and Huntington Medical Research Institutes. The USC Caruso Family Center for Childhood Communication is one of three centers in the United States conducting a U.S. Food and Drug Administration clinical trial with auditory brainstem implants in children and is the only center with a National Institutes of Health grant that covers many study-related expenses of participating families.
The USC Caruso Family Center for Childhood Communication, affiliated with Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, opened in October 2013 and is staffed by clinicians who have an exceptional level of expertise. Through our comprehensive services and extensive rehabilitative and follow-up care, we give children not only the ability to hear, but also the tools and support to optimize their communication and academic skills.
ConditionsHearing loss in children
Hearing loss may be present at birth or may develop at any point in a child’s life. It may be temporary or permanent. Hearing loss may be present in one or both ears and may range from mild to profound.
Some possible signs of hearing loss:
- A newborn baby does not startle to a loud noise
- An infant does not react to speech or environmental sounds
- Delays in the understanding of spoken language
- A toddler is not using single words by about 15 months, or two word sentences by age 2
- A young child’s speech is unusually difficult to understand
Treatments and Services
Educational counseling is provided to families providing current information regarding community school programs, school interventions, therapies and educational interventions that support the development of communication and academic skills. Families acquire critical information about the IFSP and the IEP process during individual educational counseling sessions. Staff development and school in-services are provided by the educational specialist upon request. Auditory verbal therapy is also provided by the educational specialist. The educational specialist offers 35 years of experience working with deaf and hard of hearing children of all ages.
“Come Read with Me at USC,” an innovative Caruso Family Center clinical and research based program offered annually each summer is designed to meet the needs of children with hearing loss during the period of emergent literacy. The program includes three components: teacher education, parent learning and direct instructional opportunities for young children developing phonological awareness and concepts of print. This program supports the development of foundational literacy skills necessary for academic success.
Early intervention is critical to the development of successful communication outcomes. Our center is a participant with the California Newborn Hearing Screening Program, whose mission is identification of hearing loss and provision of appropriate services within the first few months of a baby’s life. The center provides the full spectrum of hearing care for children, working directly with our Keck Medicine of USC otolaryngologists, who form one of the world’s most specialized teams in cochlear implantation and hearing restoration surgery.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Where is the USC Caruso Family Center for Childhood Communication?
We are located at 806 W. Adams Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90007.
Q. Where can I park?
Complimentary parking is available for guests in a lot adjacent to the center. Please press the intercom button and our staff will open the gate for you.
Q. When are you open?
We are open 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday (excluding holidays).
Q. Should I bring anything to my child’s appointment?
If possible, please provide copies of any pertinent test results, medical reports and audiological and speech/language evaluations, insurance card, identification and the pre-arrival packet that we will send you. The representative who schedules your appointment will let you know if anything more is required.
ResourcesThe USC Caruso Family Center monthly newsletter, Come Talk With Me, provides families with strategies to promote language, literacy and academic knowledge. Share these tips and strategies at home during conversations with your children.
- November 2017 newsletter
- October 2017 newsletter (Spanish)
- September 2017 newsletter
- August 2017 newsletter
- July 2017 newsletter
- June 2017 newsletter
- May 2017 newsletter
- April 2017 newsletter
- March 2017 newsletter
- February 2017 newsletter
- January 2017 newsletter
- December 2016 newsletter
- October 2016 newsletter
- September 2016 newsletter
- August 2016 newsletter
- June 2016 newsletter
- May 2016 newsletter
- April 2016 newsletter
- March 2016 newsletter
- January 2016 newsletter
Speech Language Pathologists
Debra Schrader, LSLS Cert-AVT