A couple of interesting things…From ZipAud.com

Pretty much everyone uses circles and
crosses, after that the variation begins.
Some use open and closed triangles, some open triangles and square brackets, but at the end of the day we are all aiming to achieve the same
thing… to accurately describe our clients hearing levels.  Of course, I’m talking about the variation in
how audiograms are recorded in different countries around the world, but the variation doesn’t stop with recording the audiogram! We have different types of professionals helping people with their hearing impairment, varying levels of
education and certification required to work in the hearing industry and many different organisations and services dedicated to improving the lives of people with hearing impairment.

As we move on through the 21st century the world is becoming a smaller place, not only does the internet bring information right into our home or workplace but it is easy to get on a plane and travel to the other side of the world to visit or even to stay and work.  What is “normal practice” to you may not be normal to an Audiologist in the UK or Australia.  Perhaps the way “they” do it is wrong!  Perhaps they have an interesting way ofachieving a similar outcome, or there may even be something that you could add to your repertoire of skills.

I’m assuming that Audiology is a big part of your world; I know it is a big part of mine, but in the scheme of things we work in a small profession.  With around 10 – 14% of the population having hearing loss and a considerably smaller percentage acting on it, professionals tend to be spread out far and wide tomeet the needs of our clients.  This can be isolating.  Wouldn’t it be great to be able to connect with your real colleagues to discuss client cases, research and other professional topics, even though you are not in the same city or even the same country.

ZipAud.com is an international website for hearing professionals.  It helps hearing professionals from around the world to connect and discuss topics we hold important: newborn hearing screening, tinnitus, running an audiology practice, audiology in developing countries and tele-audiology to name a few.  ZipAud also helps you to share and learn about how hearing industries vary between countries or locations.  This is where you have the opportunity to contribute…Audapedia is an encyclopedia with content for hearing professionals written by hearing professionals. It’s based on a wiki so you can contribute and help revise and improve any article.  How is the cochlear implant program run in your city or state?  What types of hearing professionals work in your country?  What are their roles?  What are their qualifications?  Who is the registering body, society or association?  You may only have a small piece of knowledge to add but that knowledgemay be incredibly useful for one of your colleagues and you will benefit by learning about something they have contributed.

Even within your city or state it is likely there are services and professionals who work with hearing impaired clients that may compliment your work.  You may be able to refer or work synergistically with other professionals, for example a colleague who specialises in cerumen / wax management or works wi
with children with auditory processing disorders (APD).  As more information is added and the knowledge base grows, benefits increase to hearing professionals, their clients and also to future hearing professionals looking to join the profession.

A hearing industry article has been created for many countries and for all US states.  For now, most are starter articles, a place where more information can be added.  What information can you add to your country or state article?   It would be great to have you as a member of ZipAud.  Join at www.zipaud.com.  Once you are a ZipAud member you may edit any article.  Be BOLD and don’t worry about making a mistake; all articles can be reverted to a previous version if needed. It would be great to have you as a member of ZipAud.  Log in at www.zipaud.com and join the
community.

A lot of what we do in the world of hearing care involves adhering to strict protocols and rules.  However the approach to hearing care still varies between countries and even between states.  I may be idealistic but I’d like to believe that a common goal remains – to provide our hearing impaired clients with the support and advice that helps them to live their life in the way that is right for them.

Article submitted to Hearing International by:

Maree Harper, M. Aud., is an Audiologist from New Zealand as well as the Editor and of ZipAud.com.  She is also the mother of twins, July 26, 2011.

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About Robert Traynor

Robert M. Traynor is a board certified audiologist with 45 years of clinical practice in audiology. He is a hearing industry consultant, trainer, professor, conference speaker, practice manager, and author. He has 45 years experience teaching courses and training clinicians within the field of audiology with specific emphasis in hearing and tinnitus rehabilitation. Currently, he is an adjunct professor in various university audiology programs.