30/04/2020 | 08:00 CEST | Phonak
Stäfa, Switzerland, April 30, 2020 – Phonak is responding to the immediate need for those with hearing loss to receive essential care amid the COVID-19 pandemic with technology that will allow hearing care professionals (HCPs) to deliver remote audiological care. This new telehealth technology is comprised of a suite of Phonak eSolutions featuring online hearing testing as well as real-time remote hearing aid fitting, programming and fine-tuning. These tools work together to remotely connect providers with clients at every stage of the hearing care journey from the comfort and safety of their homes
Prior to COVID-19, research showing the association between hearing loss and socio-emotional challenges such as increased loneliness1, distress2, depressive thoughts,2,3 and an overall lower quality of life4 was well-documented. Now, a new study published in The Lancet examining the psychological impact of quarantine found that social-distancing and self-quarantine is likewise linked to an increase in depression, stress or low mood.5
“These findings are especially worrying for people living with hearing loss who are now dealing with the realities of social distancing,” said Angela Pelosi, Director of Global Audiology for Phonak. “Hearing well and having easy access to the right technology are key to maintaining important human connections, especially during periods of isolation. Our goal was to develop technology that empowers people with hearing loss to move forward in their hearing journey without allowing COVID-19 to get in the way of their hearing and communication goals.”
Phonak has been a leader in the development of eAudiology best practices, technologies, and services that enable remote audiological care (eAudiology) for several years. While initially developed to complement the delivery of hearing care, these tools have now become extremely valuable in light of COVID-19.
Using AudiogramDirect, HCPs can administer an audiogram that serves as the starting point for new remote fittings until face-to-face appointments can safely resume. This software was originally designed to check a client’s hearing during an in-person follow-up session but has now been enhanced to feature remote fitting capabilities, even taking into account the properties of the individual ear, the acoustic coupling, and the chosen hearing aids.
“While this technology is not intended to replace clinical best practices nor in-person audiological care, it represents a way for practices to continue delivering quality hearing care while their clients remain safely at home,” added Pelosi. “During this challenging time, it’s especially important for those with hearing loss to have access to professional hearing health care, whether they are just beginning their hearing journey, are currently in-trial, or are experienced users needing fine-tuning. “It not only allows them to remain socially connected but also helps to preserve and enhance their overall well-being in the short and long term.”
Phonak’s suite of eSolutions are compatible with all Phonak Audéo™ Marvel, Bolero™ Marvel, Naída™ Marvel and Audéo™ B-Direct hearing.
To better support the millions of Phonak wearers in Europe during the confinement, Phonak also announces it is expanding hearing aid repair home delivery service in Europe. Clients in need of repair should contact their hearing care professional to request this service. Phonak will then coordinate the sending and receiving of all shipping logistics, including mailing the repaired device directly to the consumer’s home.
Headquartered near Zurich, Switzerland, Phonak, a member of the Sonova Group, was created in 1947 out of a passion for taking on the most difficult hearing challenges. Seventy years later, this passion remains. As one of the industry’s leading innovator, we offer the broadest portfolio of life-changing hearing solutions. From pediatric to profound hearing loss, we remain committed to creating hearing solutions that change people’s lives to thrive socially and emotionally. We believe in creating a world where ‘Life is on’ for everyone.
|At Phonak, we believe that well-hearing equates to well-being and is essential to living life to the fullest. For more than 70 years, we have remained passionate about creating a world where ‘life is on’ for everyone. Our innovative hearing solutions are designed for people of all ages and all degrees of hearing loss, to connect socially, thrive mentally and grow emotionally. Life is on.|