Objective: To compare the ALGO 3 Newborn Hearing Screener (Natus Medical Inc.) to the ALGO 2e Newborn Hearing Screener (Natus Medical Inc.).
Design: A prospective evaluation.
Setting: Three maternity hospitals.
Patients/Participants: 199 newborns enrolled; 194 completed the study.
Interventions: Patients were tested using either the ALGO 3 screener or the ALGO 2e screener first, and then screened with the alternate device. Initial screens resulting in REFER outcomes were repeated using the same device. An ALGO 2e PASS result was accepted as adequate evidence of hearing. Two sequential ALGO 2e REFER results required further diagnostic testing to determine hearing status.
Main Outcome Measures: Average screening times and referral rates of both hearing screeners.
Results: The ALGO 3 screener averaged 70.8 seconds (95% confidence interval = 34.5–107.1 seconds), or was 23% faster than the ALGO 2e screener (p = .0002). There were 48% fewer REFER results after initial screening with the ALGO 3 screener (5.7%) than with the ALGO 2e screener (10.9%) (p = .06). Faster screen times and fewer referrals were noted at each hospital.
Conclusion: The ALGO 3 screener can increase caregiver efficiency by accurately screening hearing in newborns faster and with fewer REFER results than the ALGO 2e screener.