Wireless: The New Frontier?

Most of us are using hearing devices that have wireless capabilities, yes?  Well, of course we are because it is built right in the aids now.  But what about the accessories?  Do you utilize the rooms you have to demonstrate?  I happen to have a “Technology” Room in my office, pictured here.  I changed the name from ALD to Technology recently just to make it sound a bit snazzier.  We have everything from alarm clocks, MP3 players, telephones and most of the wireless systems to demonstrate here.  If you do not have room for this, the lobby might be able to work as well.  We have been much more successful demonstrating than just talking about how things can work.  I also need to try everything in my own environment to see how it would work before I can show my patients.  But most importantly we need to keep trying new things our our patients will not get the most benefit.

 

I bring wireless up with everyone, not everyone will want to use it though.  I have one patient in his early 80s who is very active but has the worst word discrimination and has had for years.  I wanted to do the streamer and remote microphone with some demo aids because this is what would do the trick, and he tried in the office, but refused to try at home.  Others we have used this set up and they are like a duck to water.

 

The only area I would like to see helped with wireless that is not right now is a group situation.  We need something to take the place of telecoil for many people in the audience to hear with one system.  This must be a challenge for the engineers to have everyone on the same signal for only a short time and not connect again.  But if we can code things for wireless internet in a conference room for just the time of the class, I think this would be possible.  But then again I am not an engineer!

 


About Judy Huch

4 Comments

  1. Agreed! I am hoping the cosmetic aspect will change as well. Hopefully like glasses they can be a fashion statement at some point.

  2. Thank you Judy for responding.

    Re: The disconnect as I see it is manufacturers have been moving toward wireless and dropping the telecoils in many of their most popular models”. Yes, that is a problem with most manufacturers – but not all.
    Re: “It is difficult to tell the patient they have to get a bigger hearing aid to have the benefits of a telecoil”. Again, some manufacturers still have telecoils all across their product line. We need to support those that do so that the client can get the maximum value from their hearing device expenditure . The telecoil “completes the hearing aid experience” like no other hearing aid option can.

    This penchant for the smaller and invisible is such a paradox. Significant numbers of our population have visible, even highly visible, earbuds, headphones and Bluetooth receivers attached for hours on end every day – more visible than the dreaded hearing aid.

    http://www.betterhearingsolutions.ca

  3. Thank you for the comment. The telecoil is the ONLY way to deal with a group effectively and at a nominal cost (utilizing hearing aids and able to help those without, Infrared is another possibility, not without its own set of problems and FM is too expensive for most). The disconnect as I see it is manufacturers have been moving toward wireless and dropping the telecoils in many of their most popular models. Tucson has a very strong Looping community. It is difficult to tell the patient they have to get a bigger hearing aid to have the benefits of a telecoil, although there are some manufacturers working on this.

  4. Hi Judy;

    I think your technology room is a great idea. Try and compare before the purchase helps customers make better decisions.

    I’m afraid that I do not understand your comment about the telecoil and the group situation. Audio Frequency Induction Loop Systems (AFILS) precisely fit the requirements – a single wireless system that works with all telecoil equipped hearing aids. If every hearing aid sold today had a telecoil, we would have the ability to provide a universal system. It’s time to “Get in the hearing loop” (HLAA).

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