From the Editor: This week’s Hearing International was prepared by the President-Elect of the American Academy of Audiology, Dr. Jackie Clark. Dr. Clark, a Director and Founder of the Coalition for Global Health discusses the organization and its 7th International Conference to be held in Manila this Fall.
This 7th Coalition for Global Hearing Health Conference will be hosted at University of Santo Tomas, Manila, Philippines from October 24th – 25th, and promises to exceed all of past conference records according to numbers of attendees, numbers of oral and poster presentations, countries represented, and engaging pre-conference activities. With the Foundation’s aim of “Making Hearing Health a Global Priority”, the Coalition for Global Hearing Health has successfully engaged professionals in audiology, otolaryngology, speech pathology, teachers, policy makers, academicians, philanthropic organizations, industry as well as family members interested in Ear and Hearing Health for two days of plenary talks, posters and sharing about the challenges and solutions involved in access and establishing sustainable services for ear and hearing health in under resourced regions.
This year’s highly esteemed Invited Speakers include: Drs. Philip Newell, William Martin, Suchitra Prasansuk, and Sujana Chadrasekhar. All have left an indelible mark in the Ear and Hearing Care domain.
- Dr. Newell is best known in the Pacific region for his landmark efforts leading to the first training program for audiologists in Beijing, and later in the Philippines.
- Dr. Martin, best known for extensive work in hearing loss prevention, recently joined the faculty of National University of Singapore University, for the purpose of building an audiology program.
- Dr. Prasansuk has a long history in Thailand and East Asia as the Past President of Hearing International, as well as the visionary that brought otolaryngology to Thailand.
- Though known as the Director of New York Otology, Dr. Chadrasekhar is the second female President of the American Academy of Otolarynogology – Head and Neck Surgery and Foundation.
Once again, and for a small additional fee, a number of internationally renowned speakers will provide pre-conference workshops on Sunday, October 23rd that include: Public Health Planning for Hearing Impairment; Plan and Deploy a Successful Humanitarian Program; Dangerous Decibels and many others. All registration for pre-conference, conference and conveniently located lodging can be completed through www.cghh.usu.edu. As in past conferences, lively discussions will be focused around the number of oral and poster presentations.
What is the Coalition for Global Hearing Health?
The formation of the Coalition for Global Hearing Health was the result of fruitful initiatives between Humanitarian Committee of the International Society of Audiology and Humanitarian Concerns Committee of the American Academy of Otolaryngology. A mechanism for networking opportunities and establishing and promoting strategic sustainable guidance for humanitarian outreach programs was envisioned. In 2008, a group of interested people from different disciplines met at Alexander Graham Bell Offices in Washington, D.C. and agreed to the importance of creating a foundation for Ear and Hearing Healthcare Humanitarians that would focus on:
- influencing policy on global levels,
- providing professional networking opportunities,
- produce and disseminate information,
- create web-based educational and training programs,
- encourage culturally sensitive ethical conduct and best practices.
By 2010, the inaugural conference of the Coalition for Global Hearing Health, attended by multi-disciplinary representatives of 25 countries, was held at the American Academy of Otolaryngology Headquarters. Since then, annual conferences have convened in other notable facilities: House Ear Institute; Eduplex in Pretoria, South Africa; Vanderbilt University; and St. Catherine’s at Oxford in UK, Gallaudet University in Washington, D.C.. Regardless of venue, each of the 2-day conferences continue to garner a large multi-disciplinary international attendance with audiologists, otolaryngologists, deaf educators, families of deaf and hard of hearing individuals, individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing, nurses, philanthropic organizations, industry leaders, physicians, psychologists, academics, etc. All attendees and presenters either live or provide hearing healthcare services or products in developing countries.
The current Board of Directors for the Coalition for Global Hearing Health (Co-Directors/Co-Founders – James Saunders, MD & Jackie Clark, PhD; Treasurer – Karl White, PhD; Members at Large – Lisa Kovac, and David Molter, MD) continues to aim its focus on the purpose of advocating for hearing health services and policies; to equip and empower hearing healthcare professionals, families, educators, communities and the people who are deaf or hard of hearing; and to encourage and perpetuate best practices. Individual and organizational memberships are available through the general Coalition for Global Hearing Health website.
Dr. Jackie Clark joined the Doctor of Audiology Program faculty in 1997 and is currently Clinical Associate Professor within the School of Brain & Behavior at the University of Texas at Dallas. In addition, she has been awarded an appointment as a Research Scholar with the University of Witwatersrand, School of Speech and Hearing Therapy in Johannesburg, South Africa. Dr. Clark is currently the managing editor of the International Journal of Audiology, the Chair of the International Society of Audiology’s Humanitarian Audiologists; Co organizer of the Annual Coalition for Global Hearing Health International Conference; is a member of advisory boards and committees both nationally and internationally; and maintains a personal philanthropic program in Africa since 1997. Additionally, Dr. Clark is a member of the Board of Directors of the American Academy of Audiology and the American Board of Governors of the American Board of Audiology.