EVERY day in the UK, two children are born deaf. One will have their hearing loss diagnosed within the first few months, enabling the family to consider hearing aids, cochlear implants or sign language and giving the child the chance to develop language skills.

The other will remain undiagnosed and isolated for 18 months or more. The child's language acquisition will be seriously affected during the crucial early years, with devastating consequences for communications development and confidence.

A simple £13 test could give all children a better start in life, but is only available to the lucky few.

The new test, developed with the support of Defeating Deafness, costs less than current tests and can detect hearing loss within days of birth.

The Government is considering whether or not to give all deaf children a fair start by offering the new test to every new-born baby. Defeating Deafness is leading the campaign to make sure they make the right choice.

If you want to support our campaign, contact Defeating Deafness on 020 7833 1733.

CLAIRE RAYNOR, for Defeating Deafness (The Hearing Research Trust), Gray's Inn Road, London WC1.

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