Press Release – Team effort to help young hear

Press Release – 12 December 2017 – immediate release

Team effort to help young hear

A ‘cool’ new device being developed by two NHS trusts and their supporters could bring relief to children suffering from the frustration of glue ear.

Experts from Cambridge Community Services (CCS) and Cambridge University Hospitals (CUH) NHS Trusts pooled their expertise to adapt an existing brand of sports headphone so it helps young sufferers to hear.

Instead of fitting over blocked ears, the headphones sit on the cheek bones and contain a tiny mechanism that vibrates when it picks up a signal from a remote microphone.

The vibrations travel along the cheekbone and skip the middle ear before arriving in the inner ear where they are interpreted as sound. It’s known as “bone conduction”.

The development follows collaboration between CCS’s community paediatrician, Dr Tamsin Brown, medical engineer, Cara Cooper, from the CUH’s Clinical Engineering Department, and other academic and health colleagues locally.

The development work was funded through Cambridge University Health Partners and a pilot study is being carried out with support from Cambridge Hearing Trust, Health Enterprise East, the British Society of Audiology, BAPA and Health Education East of England. The pilot study, involving about 20 youngsters will report in Spring 2018 and support submission for classification as a Medical Device. The headset will hopefully be launched late in 2018.

By the age of ten, 80 per cent of children suffer at least one episode of glue ear, a condition where the middle ear becomes filled with fluid, preventing the ossicles amplifying sound for the inner ear.

However, due to spontaneous resolution in 95 per cent of cases, treatments are only offered after “watchful waiting” periods of up to 18 months, but this can lead to speech and language problems.

Mrs Cooper spoke of the collaboration at the latest Institute of Physics and Engineering in Medicine (IPEM) conference in Surrey and picked up the President’s Prize for best oral presentation.

She said: “As clinical engineers we are delighted to collaborate on this worthwhile project, which is a good example of horizontal innovation – the process of adapting an existing product for a new application.

“Of course the children like the headphones not only because they can enjoy things like story time with mum and dad, but because they look sporty and come in cool colours like blue, green and bright pink!”

Dr Brown added: “Watchful waiting is a very sensible approach, but it can be a long and frustrating time for children and impact on language development. We wanted to find a solution to that.

“Collaborating with the Clinical Engineering Department was a great success and, with the help of other organisations too, we have innovated with what we believe is a really practical and cost-effective solution.”

Malcolm Lowe-Lauri, Executive Director at Cambridge University Health Partners, said: “Cambridge is a city of ideas and innovation where people work together to find solutions to problems and help change lives for the better. This project is great example of this tradition and how collaboration can take an idea from the drawing board to the patient – turning possibilities into better healthcare. We look forward to seeing positive results coming out of the study ahead of the project launching later next year.”

The team has set up a website about their work at https://hearglueear.wordpress.com/

 

Registration now OPEN for ground-breaking audiology event

Registration is now open for Towards A Connected Future, the first ever joint conference from BSHAA, BAA and BSA.

Taking place in Leeds on Wednesday 7 February 2018, the event programme focuses on the future of connective technology and cross-sector collaboration. Expert speakers will discuss digital transformation; best practice tools; the role of hearing care in the future; and much more. Delegates can take part in interactive sessions and votes, and can shape the debate by submitting questions and comments for the end-of-event expert panel.

Be part of this ground-breaking audiology event. Places are limited and cost £50 for members of BSHAA/BSA/BAA, £95 for non-members and £30 for students. Don’t delay – online registration and the full programme is available at

https://fitwise.eventsair.com/baabsabshaa-collaborative-event/homepage

Applications for British Science Week 2018 are now open

British Science Week is running between 9 – 18 March 2018.There are three grant schemes available to support British Science Week activities. Find out more.

Healthcare Science Week runs alongside British Science Week each year and is a fantastic opportunity to raise awareness of the invaluable contribution healthcare scientists make to the NHS and inspire the next generation of scientists. Excellent resources are available on the Health Careers website, including a healthcare science toolkit. We look forward to sharing with you what we have planned for 2018!

Ear Foundation Study Confirms Benefits of Ida Institute’s Paediatric Counselling Tool

Ear Foundation Study Confirms Benefits of Ida Institute’s My World Paediatric Counselling Tool

 

The Ear Foundation has released a new report that confirms the benefits the Ida Institute’s My World Paediatric Counselling Tool as a means for hearing care professionals to understand the child’s perspective and enable children to become active partners in their own care.

Developed in 2011 by the Ida Institute in cooperation with a group of audiologists, My World uses play theory to help children describe their experiences with hearing loss. The tool is designed as a game board and allows children to act out their days with a variety a characters, locations, and accessories.

The Ear Foundation study was conducted through a series of training sessions in the UK and Belgium involving audiologists, teachers of the deaf, teaching assistants, speech language therapists and mainstream school staff.   Feedback was overwhelmingly positive, with 100% of respondents stating that the child they used the tool with enjoyed playing with My World and 87% indicating that My World made it easy to problem solve with the child.  An impressive 92% of study participants reported that My World helped them achieve the goal of their session.  Several also stated that they adapted their goals based on the information gathered by using My World.

In addition to better understanding the professionals’ experience using My World, the Foundation also gathered their recommendations on how to further develop the pediatric counseling tool.

To learn more about the My World Pediatric Counseling Tool and to order a copy of the game board, visit https://idainstitute.com/toolbox/my_world.

Read the full report at the Ear Foundation website

http://www.earfoundation.org.uk/research/research-categories/current-research/evaluation-of-the-ida-institutes-my-world-tool

About the Ear Foundation

The Ear Foundation ( http://www.earfoundation.org.uk ) provides independent information, education and support for deaf children, young people, and adults with cochlear implants and other technologies, their families and their supporting professionals. We also carry out child and family-centred research in the field of cochlear implantation and other hearing technologies. Our vision is that all deaf people have the opportunity to hear, communicate and develop spoken language using the latest technological interventions.

Towards a Connected Future – first joint event from BAA, BSA and BSHAA

The first ever joint event to be co-hosted by the BAA, BSA and BSHAA on 7th February 2018 in Leeds will be called ‘Towards a Connected Future’.

The programme committee have been working hard to deliver a balanced and thought-provoking day.

Towards a Connected Future means looking to a future of connective technology, connected cross-sector collaboration and keeping people connected to living happier, engaged and independent lives.

The programme for the day will include exhibition time and hearing from key suppliers on how they are responding to the rapidly emerging connective technology, as well as the legislation passed in the US to sell hearing technology over the counter.

Well-known speakers will bring you a series of insights which will take you on a journey to better understand the impact and opportunities of technology and healthcare pressures on our everyday procedures, tools, service models – and audiology professionals.

The day will culminate in a not-to-be missed expert panel representing a mix of sectors and opinions from within audiology who will be answering your questions. The programme will provide opportunities to vote and have your say as we look at the challenges and opportunities confronting our profession. Questions and observations can be written anonymously if desired on the day.

We hope the programme will ignite your passions and views and help inform us all, and in particular your professional bodies to ensure they stay aligned to their members’ views and needs.

Registration details and the full programme will be released soon.

This ground-breaking event is co-hosted by BAA, BSA and BSHAA and offers a membership rate to all delegates irrespective of which body or bodies you are a member of. Remember, this is a trial event and if successful is a format that could go around the country bringing a set of localised events once a year to a venue closer to your home. To get to that place, though, we need as much support as possible for this first pioneering meeting.

The event will be held at the Hilton Leeds City, easily accessible from the M1 and M62, just a three-minute walk from Leeds City train station and just 10 miles from Bradford Airport. With a newly refurbished meeting and exhibition space, it promises to be a great venue.

Creating a hearing and balance directory

The BSA is planning to put together a directory of current hearing and balance services.  Given recent threats to services it is important for the BSA to quickly respond by providing an evidence-base to stakeholders.  By providing department details we will be able to quickly contact your service.

To help us cross reference if we have the most up to date contact details for your department please complete these 2 questions through survey monkey:

https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/HaBHoD17

 

Vacancies for the Paediatric Audiology Interest Group

The Paediatric Audiology Group (PAIG) has an two exciting opportunities for committed professionals to become part of the steering group.

We are particularly keen to recruit professionals who are Speech and Language Therapists, Paediatricians or have a background in research.

PAIG is committed to improving the quality of life for children who have hearing impairment and their families and believe that this can be achieved with collaborative working with other organisations.

We are also looking for a number of new members to join our advisory group who provide a vital supportive role.

Both of these positions will give you an opportunity to be involved in the direction of this special interest group.

All applicants must be a member of BSA. If you would like further information about these roles or you would like to participate in either the steering group or the advisory group please apply by copying and completing the box below into an email and send to bsa@thebsa.org.uk by Monday 18th December

 

Name
Which position are you interested in Steering Group/ Advisory Group
City and Country where you are based
BSA Membership Number
Contact email
Contact mobile phone number
Job Title
Main Responsibilities
What you could bring to being a member of PAIG

Recruitment for the Balance Interest Group – previous applicants are welcome to reapply

The British Society of Audiology (BSA) Balance Interest Group (BIG) Steering Committee wishes to recruit two additional members. We are looking for individuals with a good level of experience and expertise with (one or more of) assessment, diagnosis, treatment, rehabilitation, and management of patients with vestibular and balance disorders. Applications are invited from clinicians, education/ academia, and third sector; but crucially enthusiasm, fresh ideas and commitment to contribute to the work of the committee are highly sought.

The committee meets for three five-hour meetings each year, currently held in London, but there is also regular email correspondence and the requirement to carry out project work inbetween meetings. Committee work includes writing specialist Recommended Procedures, advising the BSA Council on balance issues, responding to balance related queries to the BSA, organising educational events, encouraging balance related research, and other projects aimed at improving the assessment and management of balance disorders.

The committee reflects the multidisciplinary nature of the BSA, to include input from Clinical Scientists, Audiologists, Physiotherapy, Neurology, academia, and Director of a Charity. We will be looking to continue this multidisciplinary representation, and this will form part of our selection criteria.

Please submit both your CV and a brief statement (approx. 200-300 words) detailing your commitment to being a member of the committee and how you might contribute to the group. Please email these to Andrew Wilkinson, Chair BSA Balance Interest Group at Andrew.Wilkinson@UHBristol.nhs.uk by Friday 15th December 2017. Informal enquiries are very welcome (Tel: 0117 342 5854).

Survey Invite – Improving Adult Social Work in England

A major survey has been launched to find out what research needs to happen in future to further improve adult social work in England.

The survey asks professionals who work alongside social workers, social workers themselves, and service users who have been in contact with social workers in England to talk about their experiences and what they think should be priorities for future social work research.

It is part of an Adult Social Work Priority Setting Partnership, started by the Chief Social Worker for Adults in England in the Department of Health.

Lyn Romeo, Chief Social Worker for Adults in England said:

“We want to understand more about what works best when social workers work with adults and their families.  Research evidence can help with this but first we need to know what is important to people and therefore what to research.  That is why this survey is vital.  It will help us to make sure that future research answers the questions that are important to social workers themselves and anyone who has been in contact with them.  We want future research to make a real difference to improve the quality of care and support that people receive.”

The survey will be open until January 2018 at www.bit.ly/ASWresearch and the team wants to hear the views of everyone affected by or involved with adult social work.

BIHIMA designs Hearing Technology Timeline to celebrate first birthday

BIHIMA designs Hearing Technology Timeline to celebrate first birthday

BIHIMA is marking the first anniversary of its rebrand and change of name, not only by celebrating its own birthday and achievements over the past year, but by also recognising how far the entire industry has come in technological terms since hearing aids were first pioneered. Our new online timeline reveals a story of invention and innovation that continues to inspire our members today.

The small scale and intricate design of hearing devices means that the technology behind them has to be incredibly sophisticated, resulting in products which are at the forefront of the digital technology revolution. This inevitably means that hearing technology is rapidly changing all the time.

But progress hasn’t always been so fast. As our timeline illustrates, the first ever hearing device – a large horn-shaped wooden instrument – was documented in 1588, but it wasn’t until the late 1700s that large ear trumpets were in common use. Around the same time, it was discovered that bone conduction could help hearing. In 1812 a device was invented which connected speaker and listener by a rod held between their teeth!

As the new century dawned, in 1898, the first electric hearing aids were pioneered. The same transistor technology used in newly invented telephones was then directly applied to hearing devices – and yet it wasn’t until the 1950s that the first transistor body-worn hearing devices came on the market.

The seeds of the digital sound age were finally sown in the 1960s when speech and audio signals were processed on a large mainframe computer – and, as they say, the rest is history! Today, this rapidly evolving technology encompasses Bluetooth tech, smart phone compatibility, rechargeable batteries, and who knows what other life-changing capabilities will be available tomorrow.

BIHIMA continually seeks to champion this pioneering spirit at the heart of the hearing technology industry by promoting the innovative products of our members, and also through our activity as an advocate for change with government and policy makers. This has been reflected in a number of key campaigns over the past year, most recently our call for further research into the link between hearing loss and dementia in order to quantify the role of hearing technology.

“We are proud of this and all the important work we’ve done over the last 12 months,” said the BIHIMA chairman Paul Surridge. “This technology timeline is a way of looking back at our own short history as an organisation in the context of all the years of pioneering hearing technology that’s gone before it. This is a history that our members are still shaping today as we look towards the exciting, ever-changing future of hearing technology.”

 

Notes for editors:

– BIHIMA represents the hearing instrument manufacturers of Britain and Ireland, working in partnership with other professional, trade, regulatory and consumer organisations within the health care and charitable sectors. We raise consumer awareness about the latest hearing technology, and aim to influence government and policy makers to improve the lives of people with hearing difficulties.

– For further information, visit www.bihima.com

Please contact olivia@olivecommunicate.com for further information.

Hazllpike Prize – British Association of Audiovestibular Physicians (BAAP)

The Hazllpike Prize is an annual prize given by the British Association of Audiovestibular Physicians (BAAP) for the best project of the past 24 month period (research, audit or review of subject) in the area of audiovestibular medicine. The project can be unpublished or be in form of a presentation or poster, but the prize committee must be able to assess its quality from the available information.

The application form can be found here which details more information.

 

MEMBERSHIP CONSULTATION – Guidance on the verification of hearing devices using probe microphone measurements 2017

The British Society of Audiology’s Professional Practice Group are delighted to send out for consultation Practice Guidance on the verification of hearing devices using probe microphone measurements 2017.

To view the document please Click Here

We would ask that when you respond to the consultation that you use the appropriate form to report the areas of the document that require the authors attention and these should include making any suggested changes. To access this form please click here Consultation response form

The deadline for this consultation is Friday 8th December at 12pm and all replies should be sent to Laura Turton, Operations Manager on laura@thebsa.org.uk

If you want to understand more about how the BSA processes it’s Practice Guidance then please click here http://www.thebsa.org.uk/understanding-way-bsa-manage-process-practice-guidance/

Obituary – In memory of Professor Roger D Thornton

 

Professor Roger D Thornton

(5th April 1944 – 19th October 2017)

 

Professor Roger Thornton graduated with a degree in electronics before being awarded his PhD in 1969 whilst working at the Institute of Sound and Vibration Research at the University of Southampton. Roger developed an expertise in auditory electrophysiology; his research interests led him to develop the clinical use of the human ABR to identify tumours of the auditory brainstem and measurement of the cochlear travelling wave velocity, of relevance to frequency coding within the cochlear and to Ménière’s disease. In the 1970s he contributed to the newly-developed MSc degree in Audiology at Southampton with colleagues Ross Coles and Alan Martin.

Roger was made Professor and became the Director of the Southampton outstation of the MRC Institute of Hearing Research where he coordinated a major study of the OAE as a screening test for neonates. This work helped form the foundation upon which the English newborn hearing screening programme was built.

Roger was awarded the TS Littler lectureship by the British Society of Audiology in 2005 in recognition of his services to Audiology and in 2008 he was granted a DSc.

In later years Roger pioneered the use of non-linear analysis of otoacoustic emissions and brainstem responses though Volterra Kernels. These are thought to measure nonlinearities in the cochlea and have the potential to assess early damage, such as due to presbyacusis or ototoxic drugs.

Roger was held in high regard internationally and for at least two decades was Chair of the International Evoked Response Audiometry Study Group (IERASG) from which he stepped down in 2009. The group has always been refreshingly informal, acting as a nursery for the cultivation of younger auditory electrophysiologists as well as a platform for the exchange of new ideas. One of the highlights at IERASG’s biennial meetings was Roger’s delivery of an impressive thankyou speech in the local language (most recently Polish & Korean), clearly the result of many hours preparation and a testament to Roger’s intellectual ability and his respect for his hosts.  He was responsible for the introduction of spoof awards at IERASG symposia, in which prizes of variable value were given for the silliest of reasons – the longest journey, the greatest number of authors of a paper etc. It was quite easy to “milk” the system and certain people (who need not be named!) have, over the years, shamelessly contrived to receive a disproportionate number of awards.

Roger was always easy to find at the social events of scientific meetings: as a member of The Magic Circle he took great pleasure in his close-up magic tricks and was usually to be found at the centre of a knot of amazed and appreciative colleagues. However, he did experience occasional difficulty in getting through airport security with his handcuffs and chains! He recounted his method for avoiding being locked up: giving the security personnel an impromptu demonstration of his skills.

Roger lived for his work; he adored science and when he took his honeymoon in 1998 with his second wife Jan in Provo, Utah, Roger undertook a project testing babies’ hearing, presumably in addition to his husbandly duties!  Roger was a prolific scientific author with over fifty peer-reviewed published journal articles, spanning five decades and over fifteen high quality journals. 

Another aspect to Roger’s life was his deeply held Christian faith, which led to a ministry as a Licensed Lay Reader within the Church of England, exercised with his characteristic generosity and good humour.

Roger leaves his beloved wife Jan, daughter Beth, brother Phillip and, of course, hundreds of colleagues both in the UK and abroad whose professional and personal lives were enriched by meeting this extraordinary man.

 

Guy Lightfoot and David Baguley

 

Hyperacusis – You can make a real difference

Are you a healthcare professional who works with and support those who experience hyperacusis? Do you have hyperacusis? Do you know or care for someone experiencing hyperacusis?

 

We need you to complete a short survey online (https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/hyperacusis) or by post (on request) asking for the ideas and questions you have on the causes, assessment, and management of hyperacusis, and the prevention, support and healthcare services for hyperacusis. Anyone with experience of hyperacusis can complete the survey.

With the information we collect, we will work together with people with experience of hyperacusis to form a set of priorities for research to make sure that the questions that are important are answered.

For more information please visit our dedicated webpage: www.hearing.nihr.ac.uk/research/hyperacusis-PSP or email us at: JLAHyperacusis@nottingham.ac.uk

The survey is OPEN and can be completed by visiting: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/hyperacusis

Thank you for your time,

Kathryn

 Dr Kathryn Fackrell

Hyperacusis PSP study co-ordinator

National Institute for Health Research Nottingham Biomedical Research Centre

#FabChangeWeek 2017

Calling all Healthcare Scientists! There is less than 5 weeks to go until Fab Change Week, which is being held from 13 – 17 November 2017. This year we want to showcase the incredible work of healthcare scientists in the NHS using #HCSaddingvalue. Get involved and join the campaign by pledging to improve either patient experience, patient safety, leadership and staff wellbeing or service improvements. Upload a photo of your pledge to the Fab Change website and share with @WeHCScientists #FabChangeWeek #HCSaddingvalue!

Applications are open for the Advancing Healthcare Awards 2018

Allied health professionals, healthcare scientists and those who work alongside them in support roles have until 19 January 2018 to enter the Advancing Healthcare Awards, the unique awards programme which crosses boundaries and fosters partnership working. This year there are four new awards. The Chroma award for realising potential through creativity, the Viapath award for innovation in healthcare science, the IBMS award for inspiring the biomedical workforce of the future and the Biomedical Scientist of the Year award, sponsored by Health Services Laboratories. Download the launch brochure and find out how to apply. The awards will be presented on 20 April 2018 at a central London venue.

http://www.ahpandhsawards.co.uk/the-awards-ceremony-2017/

 

Taking forward action for the millions with hearing loss 

Taking forward action for the millions with hearing loss 

Following a speech at the Ear Foundation, Deputy Chief Scientific Officer, Fiona Carragher outlines  the achievements of the Action Plan for Hearing Loss, and reflects on the importance of coordinated action to ensure high quality care for all. Read more.

UK Nominations for the Queen’s Birthday 2018 Honours

UK Nominations for the Queen’s Birthday 2018 Honours

I am writing to seek your help in identifying potential candidates from across healthcare science for the 2018 Birthday Honours List. We are looking for nominations for people who work for, volunteer or have made an outstanding contribution at any level within healthcare science, who will be put forward to both the health and science honours committees. The honours system recognises the achievements of ordinary people who do extraordinary things; there are hundreds of people working in healthcare science who go above and beyond the call of duty every day and we need your help to ensure these people are nominated and hopefully rewarded and recognised.

Attached to this email is a Honours Nominations Guidance 2017 to assist giving your nomination that best possible chance of success. Anyone can be nominated for an honour by anyone else regardless of status or seniority. When crafting your nomination, it is important to explain what the nominee has done and how their personal contribution has made a significant impact to patients and service users, through their work in healthcare science over a sustained period of time. Particular emphasis should be placed on what your nomination has achieved, whether this is locally, regionally, nationally or internationally.

We remain committed to increasingly the number of nominations for those who continue to be severely underrepresented, including women and black and ethnic minorities. In addition, we would like to consider more candidates for the British Empire Medal which is aimed at young people early in their career who are making a strong impact within healthcare science.

Nominations should ideally be signed-off by the Chairman/Chief Executive of the organisation. The deadline for completing the nomination form is 31 October 2017. Please send your fully completed nomination form to england.cso@nhs.net. All nominations will be subject to a review within NHS England before being forwarded to the Department of Health Honours team.  If you have any questions regarding the honours process please do not hesitate to contact us.

Please remember the only way to ensure that healthcare scientists and those working within healthcare science are represented on any honours list is to receive nominations. I look forward to receiving yours, and I am grateful for your help in recognising the achievements of people who make a difference within healthcare science.

Yours sincerely,

 

Professor Sue Hill OBE PhD DSc CBiol FSB Hon FRCP Hon FRCPath

Chief Scientific Officer

CITATION FORM HONOURS (latest)

Honours Nominations Guidance 2017

British Tinnitus Association urges patients to ‘reach out’ and ask for help

 

 

THE British Tinnitus Association has today (Monday 9 October 2017) revealed the extent of isolation felt amongst people living with the condition.

Research conducted by the charity has found sixty one percent of respondents agree or strongly agree that living with tinnitus makes them feel isolated from society.

The survey of 483 people with tinnitus also found that 58 percent thought a lack of understanding from others about the condition led to their feelings of isolation, and 40 percent stated their isolation was caused by the changes they had made to their social life because of their tinnitus.

Thirty three percent said they felt their problem was too easily dismissed by those around them.

When asked how their isolation could be improved, 67 per cent called for better public awareness about the impact the condition can have and more than a third (34 per cent) believed that better support from their GP could make a difference.

To tackle the issues raised and increase awareness of the condition, the ‘Share Your Sound’ awareness campaign has been created by the BTA to encourage people to share their stories, talk about their condition and seek support when they’re struggling.

David Stockdale, chief executive of the British Tinnitus Association, said: “These results show the real impact tinnitus can have on someone’s quality of life and that without the right help, at the right time there can be long lasting consequences.

“Sixty one per cent of people with tinnitus feel isolated for a number of reasons including a lack of understanding from those around them or they were too easily dismissed – which just shows more needs to be done to support them. It’s also clear that to combat the isolation felt, people with tinnitus would like to see better public awareness of the condition.

“Share your Sound is a great way for us to try and do this by uniting the tinnitus community and empowering them to talk about their own experience of living with tinnitus more openly.

“We want to let people know that there is support out there so to ask for help whether it be from the BTA itself, friends and family, other people with the condition or, importantly, their GP.”

Earlier this year the BTA released guidance for GPs after it found more than half of tinnitus patients were unsatisfied with their doctor’s response to their condition.

David added: “When we talk to people with tinnitus, the feedback we often get is around the lack of information they get from GPs and this is backed up by our latest survey which revealed more than a third of people feel their GP could provide them with more support.

“Our GP guidance has been well received but it’s clear that more needs to be done. As part of this campaign we’re calling on GPs again to help them become more knowledgeable about the condition, and encouraging tinnitus patients themselves to reach out and ask for help.”

Tinnitus is an often debilitating condition that is described as a sensation or awareness of sound that is not caused by a real external sound source. It is estimated that six million people live with tinnitus in the UK and it can affect people of any age.

Around 1.05 million GP consultations for tinnitus take place each year in the UK and it’s estimated the condition costs society £2.7 billion per year.

Approximately half of patients report finding it moderately or severely distressing, with complaints of intrusiveness, emotional stress, insomnia, auditory perceptual problems and concentration problems.

David said: “Tinnitus can have a devastating effect on a person’s quality of life but if they get the right help early on they are much more likely to lead a normal life. We want to do all we can to get that message across.

“We have a Share Your Sound pack available to download from our website, which includes resources we hope patients will take to their GP to give them immediate access to our guidance – in turn, helping them to inform and support their patients better. Also, there’s lots more information on our website about how people can get involved with the campaign, including a range of icons we’ve created to portray some of the different forms of tinnitus.”

To find out more about Share Your Sound and to download a GP tinnitus support pack to share with your GP, please visit www.tinnitus.org.uk/sys.

 

For tinnitus support, please visit the British Tinnitus Association’s website: www.tinnitus.org.uk or call the BTA’sconfidentialfreephonehelpline on 0800 018 0527.

 

Publication of APoHL ‘What Works’ Guides

 

Hearing loss continues to be a growing challenge across the world with over 360 million people affected by it (WHO, February 2017). The implications for hearing loss are widespread, and affect not only how we age but our overall wellbeing, the impact of which is often underestimated.  The scale of the challenge requires concerted effort and action from across the system and a wide range of stakeholders within the public, private, professional and voluntary sectors.

I am delighted that true partnership and ongoing commitment by our stakeholder organisations within the hearing loss community continues and that we have worked together again this year to deliver more of the recommendations in the Action Plan on Hearing Loss.

 

Working in conjunction with the Department of Work and Pensions, the Department for Education and hearing loss charities, I am pleased to announce that a series of “What Works” guides are now available. The guides provide practical examples of what we know works in tackling hearing loss across the life course. The aim is to advise organisations, commissioners and providers on how best they can ensure individuals with hearing loss receive the support they need throughout the system, so that they can lead successful, fulfilling and independent lives.

Access the guides.

 

By ensuring early intervention and more appropriate services through working with people with hearing loss in a person centred way system colleagues from government, health and social care can ensure people live well with hearing loss and the system deploys resources in the most effective way. The guides will help ensure that in these key areas the system will be able to join up more around people to support them live their lives to full whether this be in through appropriate education, support in training and employment or ensuring that they are able to maintain independence and health in older age.

 

 What Works: Hearing Loss and the Transition to Adulthood. This guide has been produced in partnership by NHS England and the Department for Education and is specifically aimed at organisations that have a role in working with young people with hearing loss through the transition to adulthood, to ensure they receive the right level of provision and support to achieve their ambitions and goals.

 

What Works: Hearing Loss and Employment. This guide has been produced in partnership with the Department of Work and Pensions and is specifically aimed at employers to help them support people with hearing loss so that they can work well and contribute their best in the workplace.

 

What Works: Hearing Loss and Healthy Ageing. This guide is specifically aimed at commissioners and medical and social care providers working with older people with hearing loss to support them in maintaining health, wellbeing and independence.

 

We are very grateful to all those who have given so much of their time to produce this series of guides, in particular Action on Hearing Loss, The Ear Foundation, the National Deaf Children’s Society, the Hearing Loss and Deafness Alliance and the Working Group on Living Well with Hearing Loss.

 

I look forward to continued partnership working with you all in the future to deliver our commitment to the Action Plan on Hearing Loss.

Yours faithfully,

 

Professor Sue Hill OBE PhD DSc CBiol FRSB Hon FRCP Hon FRCPath

Chief Scientific Officer

NHS England

 

 

BSA Prizes

Every year members of the BSA are able to nominate individuals for a number of prizes.  Nominations are now open for

 

  1. The Thomas Simm Littler Prize in recognition of an academic contribution to the discipline of audiology.
  2. The Ruth Spencer Prize in recognition of a notable contribution to clinical services by a registered practitioner.

 

To receive one of these prizes is a great honour, so please take the time to think if there is someone you feel deserves this recognition.  Please send nominations to Ted Killan as vice-Chair at e.killan@leeds.ac.uk with a brief outline as to why you are nominating your chosen person.  Please make your submission by the 30th November 2017 to be considered at the December meeting of the BSA Council. ”

 

C2Hear – helping first-time hearing aid users to help themselves

Mel Ferguson gives us an overview on C2Hear. C2Hear is a series of multimedia videos for hearing aid users.

As an audiologist, are you confident that all the information and advice you offer your first-time hearing aid patients is understood, absorbed, and then acted upon once they leave the comfort of your clinic? If not, read on….Click here

NICE guideline on assessment and management of adult hearing loss

Kevin Munro gives us an update on the NICE guideline on assessment and management of adult hearing loss. His article, from Audacity covers:

The draft guidelines will be available for consultation in November 2017 and the expected date of publication is May 2018

To read the full article Click here

Cochrane review shows that hearing aids are effective for adults with mild to moderate hearing loss

A recently published Cochrane review, the highest level of evidence, has provided evidence from generally well-designed randomised controlled trials that shows hearing aids are effective for adults with mild to moderate hearing loss.

Key results show moderate quality of evidence for:

This is the first systematic review with meta-analysis that shows a significant effect of health-related QoL. Moderate quality of evidence across all the key primary and secondary effectiveness outcomes is not common, as many reviews conclude low or very-low quality evidence. Adverse effects (i.e. pain, noise-induced hearing loss) were not reported (low-quality).

The authors conclude that “the evidence is compatible with the widespread provision of hearing aids as the first-line clinical management in those who seek help for hearing difficulties”. Further well-conducted trials are needed to establish effects of age, gender, degree of hearing loss and type hearing aids. This review is being widely disseminated to audiology professionals, commissioners and researchers.

 

For full review:

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/14651858.CD012023.pub2/full

Ferguson MA, Kitterick PT, Chong LY, Edmondson-Jones AM, Barker F, Hoare D (2017). Hearing aids for mild to moderate hearing loss in adults. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. Issue 9.

 

The research has been welcomed by leading hearing loss charities, who believe it will help to influence both policy and provision of hearing aid services in the future. Ayla Ozmen, Health Policy Manager at Action on Hearing Loss, said: “This research shows that hearing aids are hugely beneficial to the lives of people with mild to moderate hearing loss. The fact that this affordable, effective intervention has been proven to enable people to continue taking part in everyday situations is extremely important. At a time when many local areas are proposing to cut hearing aids for people with mild to moderate hearing loss, this research further demonstrates what a vital intervention they are.”

Brian Lamb, Chair of the Hearing Loss and Deafness Alliance, said the quality of research provides certainty for people with hearing loss about the most effective support for them: “Cochrane systematic reviews are internationally recognised as the highest standard in evidence-based health care resources.  This Cochrane review on hearing aids for mild to moderate hearing loss shows that an objective, transparent and accountable review of the evidence finds hearing aids are effective for mild to moderate hearing loss.”

BSA, BAA and BSHAA to stage joint event in 2018

BSA, BAA and BSHAA are working together to stage a joint professional development event in 2018.

A joint survey of members from all three organisations in the summer showed overwhelming support for a collaborative event, with many members saying that it was long overdue.

A joint event will now be held at the Hilton Hotel in Leeds on 7 February. A committee made up of representatives from BSA, BAA and BSHAA is working on the event programme, driven by the survey feedback from over 600 members from across the three organisations. Comments were diverse but there were common themes that members would like to see covered at the joint event:

Sarah Vokes, BSHAA President, said: “There is a growing appetite for greater collaboration in our profession and we’re delighted to be working with BSA and BAA on this event. It will provide an exciting opportunity for members of all three organisations to come together for the first time.”

Elizabeth Midgley, BSA Chair, said: “The results of the joint survey showed overwhelming feedback from the members of all organisations for us to work collaboratively on a joint professional development event. The benefits of this for all members are numerous.”

Michelle Booth, BAA President, said: “This is a historic event as the three organisations come together to stage a joint event for the first time. We are busy planning themes, format and securing speakers and our aim is to deliver an informative, participative day.”

 

More information about the joint event will be available soon.

 

 

 

Chair’s message Autumn 2017

Were you at the BSA’s annual conference in Harrogate at the end of June?  If you were I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did.  If you weren’t you missed a treat of scientific talks, posters, commercial exhibitors, Special Interest Group sessions, networking, friendship and our 50th anniversary celebrations with Prosecco!  We were particularly delighted and honoured that one of our founding fathers, Arthur Boothroyd , was able to join us virtually with a pre-recorded message and interview. When asked what he thought  were the most significant developments in audiology in the last 50 years he said oto-acoustic emissions and  immittance measurements.  Can you imagine our clinical practice without these inventions?  I wonder what the next 50 years has in store for the BSA and the wider audiology community?

I really want to thank all our exhibitors and particularly our gold sponsors, Oticon and Otometrics without whom the conference wouldn’t be possible.  Thank you also to the sponsors of the 50th anniversary celebration evening, ENT and Audiology News, Phonak, and Amplifon.  Thank you too for the organising committee and all the hard work they put in under the leadership of Siobhan Brennan.  The success of the conference was largely due to your excellent planning and choice of speakers.

Planning has already started for the next BSA annual conference which next year will be in Brighton.  Please consider presenting your research as a poster or as an aural presentation.  Certainly please plan to attend the meeting as we hope to build on the success of the conference in Harrogate.  It really is an excellent opportunity to meet colleagues and learn from each other.

At the conference in Harrogate we held our Annual General Meeting( AGM).  This had been brought forward to June from September so that we can hold the AGM at our annual conference.  This has also meant that our financial year has been changed so that accounts can be presented at the AGM.  At the AGM we reviewed the past year (well past 10 months actually) and were pleased to learn that due to the diligence and control of expenditure from our Treasurer the BSA found itself in a stronger and more secure financial position than last year.

I believe that the BSA has had a good year and is well placed to take our work forward to improve the lives of people with hearing and balance problems.  To help us to focus our activities we have devised a three year Strategic Plan with an action plan for this year.  These are published on our website.  Please familiarise yourself with these plans and offer to help where you can.  The only people who are paid employees of the BSA are our indefatigable  Operations Manager and the team at Fitwise, our administration  management team.  Everyone else who works on behalf of BSA is a volunteer and everyone has busy day jobs.  Help from all members of BSA would ensure our plans were realised and that we move forward.  Don’t hesitate to contact any member of the BSA council if you wish to become more involved.

At the AGM Nicci Campbell came to end of her term as Trustee.  Thank you to Nicci for all the work she has done for the BSA.  She has rejuvenated the website and been the lead on our communication strategy.  She will remain connected with the BSA as incoming chair of the APD SIG.  We welcomed Carolyn Dando as a new Trustee who will lead our events and publicity strand of the action plan.  We said goodbye and another large thank you to Huw Cooper for his work over the last few years as Trustee, vice-chair, chair and immediate past chair of BSA.

In our 50th Anniversary year it was fitting to honour someone whose vision has shaped, changed and modernised the BSA over the last few years.  This is Kevin Munro and he received honorary life membership of the BSA.

On 4th and 5th of September our research scientist colleagues are organising a conference in Nottingham.  This will be an amazing opportunity for researchers and clinicians to meet and share ideas.

Watch out for information about the latest BSA member’s benefit, BSA Grow.  This is an on line platform for learning and CPD.   It is vital that we all keep up to date with the latest developments to inform our research interests and/or clinical practice.  The BSA has invested in this platform as a way of supporting learning for members in a cash and time restricted climate.

This is the first edition of Audacity that has been produced by Jane Wild and her team in majestic North Wales.  I’m really looking forward to reading it.   Please submit copy to her to share your ideas, innovations and practice with all members.

MEMBERSHIP CONSULTATION – Minimum Training Guidance on Surveillance Audiometry 2017

The British Society of Audiology’s Professional Practice Group are delighted to send out for consultation the Minimum Training Guidance on Surveillance Audiometry 2017.

To view the document please click here Min Train Guide Surveill Audiom (Draft September 2017)

We would ask that when you respond to the consultation that you use the appropriate form to report the areas of the document that require the authors attention and these should include making any suggested changes. To access this form please click here Consultation response form

The deadline for this consultation is Friday 27th October at 5pm and all replies should be sent to Laura Turton, Operations Manager on laura@thebsa.org.uk

If you want to understand more about how the BSA processes it’s Practice Guidance then please click here http://www.thebsa.org.uk/understanding-way-bsa-manage-process-practice-guidance/

Action on Hearing Loss Survey for people with hearing loss

Please consider telling your patients about this survey:

Do you find it difficult to book GP appointments by phone? Do you need doctors to speak clearly to help you lipread or do you need support from a BSL interpreter during your appointments? If so, Action on Hearing Loss want to hear from you! Over the past three years, NHS guidance has been introduced across the UK which aims to improve the way GPs and other NHS services communicate with deaf people. Action on Hearing Loss has launched a new survey to find out more about the impact of these changes. Take the survey now and share your views!

 

UK Survey on Adult Rehabilitation Outcome Measures

Outcome measures were introduced into the NHS AR service through MHAS (Modernising Hearing Aid Services) in the early 2000’s. However, since then there has been little indication nationally of what outcomes are measured, how, when and why.

What is the BSA Adult Rehabilitation Interest Group (ARIG) doing about this?

We are looking to answer these questions using a national survey to gain a UK perspective. To do this, we have chosen to take an FOI (freedom of information) approach via CCGs and Health Boards. This way we anticipate that we have a much better chance of getting answers to our survey from as many NHS service providers as possible, both NHS and independent sectors.

Why is this important?

In the current climate of cuts, it is essential that adult rehab services are able to provide evidence to show the effectiveness of what they do in terms of (i) the patient, and (ii) the service. This evidence can be used by services to demonstrate their effectiveness to trusts, healthcare commissioners and boards.

What is this the aim of this survey?

This short, 10 minute, survey is asking about what, how, when and why outcomes are measured in your service. This is not about your performance or any underhand tactics. The aim is to benchmark AR service outcomes, with a view to develop an Outcome Toolkit for UK audiologists.

 

For information the survey can be found here: BSA ARIG Outcomes Survey June17

For further information on outcome measure, see BSA ARIG Practice Guidance BSA AR Practice Guidance 5. Outcome measures

Any questions, contact Mel Ferguson melanie.ferguson@nottingham.ac.uk

10.9.17

TWJ Foundation – Research Fellowship 2019

TWJ Foundation

 Research Fellowship 2019

The Trustees of the TWJ Foundation invite applications for a 12-month TWJ Fellowship commencing 1st July 2019.  This is a Research Fellowship in Paediatric Cochlear Implantation & Otology with opportunities for clinical observation. The successful applicant will work with Professor Blake Papsin and Professor Adrian James at the Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto.

The Fellowship is open to ENT Specialty Registrars on numbered otolaryngology training programmes in the UK and Republic of Ireland, and would be particularly suitable for those on an academic track.

Applications should be made in accordance with the instructions on the TWJ website and sent to:

The TWJ Foundation

c/o Miss Lidija Ivnik – Secretary

The Royal College of Surgeons of England

35 – 43 Lincoln’s Inn Fields

London WC2A 3PE

 

Tel: 020 7611 1735

Email: secretary@twjfoundation.org

Website: www.twjfoundation.org

Closing date for applications: Monday 18th December 2017

 

Interview date and place: Thursday 1st March 2018 at the Royal College of Surgeons of England

 

Research Study: Behavioural and Attitudinal Responses to Cochlear Implantation in Australia and the UK

Seeking hearing aid audiologists to participate in a focus group to explore healthcare professionals’ experience and approaches to working with people with hearing loss.

 

This study aims to provide results that will enhance patients’ quality of life and improve services for patients with a hearing loss, with a focus on cochlear implantation. Participants will be provided with a stipend for travel time and participation, as a gesture of appreciation for their time and involvement in the study.

 

Interested?

 

If you are interested in participating in this research project, please read the attached flyer for further information and contact Sarah Hughes, the study’s Principal Investigator in the UK at T: 01656 752192, E: sarah.hughes@wales.nhs.uk

APPENDIX O_UK Audiologist flyer 090517

BSA turns 50 – Membership Awards

As part of the celebrations for the BSA turning 50 we have honoured seventeen members from across all areas of the BSA and Audiology for their support and professionalism:

For going above and beyond their role in the BSA

Prof Alan Palmer   For editing the abstracts at many Short Papers meetings for BJA / IJA publication for many years
Barry Downes For his extensive work in his role as the Treasurer of the BSA
Prof Brian Moore   For editing the abstracts at many Short Papers meetings for BJA / IJA publication for many years
Donna Corrigan   For her extensive work in her role as the Chair of the Professional Guidance Group and setting up systems to make it a vibrant and active group
Gemma Twitchen For her extensive work in her role as the Global Outreach SIG Chair and helping establish this SIG in its first year of work
Helen Brough   For her extensive contact as a member of the Global Outreach SIG and BSA member whilst volunteering in Malawi
Jane Wild   For her extensive work in her roles as the Vice Chair of ARIG and leading and motivating the Editorial team for Audacity

Shown outstanding commitment and professionalism to the BSA

Charlotte Turtle For getting BSA onto social media and supporting this work over the last 3 years
Gemma Crundwell

                                                                                                                         

For her efficiency and commitment to her role in the Learning Events Group
Robert Rendell For his long-standing commitment as a member of the Professional Guidance Group and all of the developments of BSA Guidance he has been responsible for
Siobhan Brennan For her consistent commitment to the BSA and the new challenges she accepts and delivers on both for the annual conferences, learning events and as the Chair of the EP SIG

 Contribution to the advancement of the Society

Christopher Cartwright For his initial and ongoing work on BSA online learning

Made an outstanding contribution to progress at the British Society of Audiology and the wider audiology community

Prof David Furness   For his for running the Short Papers meeting for many years
John Day For his ongoing support and leadership on all matters falling under the advisory role and for all the foundational work he has done to ensure all general enquiries and matters affecting national policy use a standardised system
Dr Melanie Ferguson For her excellent leadership of ARIG and contributions to annual conferences
Dr Nicci Campbell   For her outstanding contribution to the BSA and wider audiology community (As both a BSA trustee and Chair of the APD SIG)
Prof Ted Evens For his for instigation and running the Short Papers meeting for many years

 

Recommended procedure for fitting combination aids

On behalf of Magdalena Sereda, PhD, Senior Research Fellow in Tinnitus, British Tinnitus Association Head of Research :

The British Society of Audiology Tinnitus and Hyperacusis Special Interest Group is currently developing a recommended procedure for fitting combination aids with the view to support parity of clinical practice. This document will be based on clinical expertise and clinical consensus amongst UK hearing professionals regarding candidacy, fitting practices and procedures around combination aids. This work is part funded by the British Society of Audiology.

We are looking for hearing professionals with experience of fitting combination aids for patients with tinnitus to join our expert panel. We are looking for professionals who have fitted at least 10 patients over the last 6 months.

To develop the recommended procedure we will use a validated method for health research called a ‘Delphi review’. This method seeks consensus amongst experts through consultation using a series of iterative questionnaires. If you choose to join the expert panel then your participation would involve filling in three online questionnaires over a period of about 4 months. In the first questionnaire you will be asked to answer general open-ended questions about current practice concerning fitting combination aids for patients with tinnitus. In the second and third questionnaires you will be asked to answer a series of closed questions and will be asked to indicate how much you agree with certain statements. A fourth questionnaire might be required if we fail to reach consensus.

To make sure that the results appropriately represent views and opinions of clinicians it is very important that we receive and analyse all questionnaires from every member of the expert panel. Therefore, please take time to decide whether or not you wish to take part.

If you would like to take part or have any questions please contact: Dr Magdalena Sereda on tel: 0115 823 2625 or email to: Magdalena.Sereda@nottingham.ac.uk

We greatly appreciate your participation in our research. As a thank you, after returning the last questionnaire you will be entered into a prize draw to win a £100 gift voucher.

Invite to participate in research priorities for multiple conditions in later life

 

You are invited to contribute to an ongoing James Lind Alliance Priority Setting Partnership to identify research priorities for Multiple Conditions in Later Life.

 

Why is this important?

The 85+ age group is growing faster than any other. The management of multiple conditions for older people represents and enormous challenge for health and social care.

Hearing impairment is the leading comorbidity for adults aged 85+, above visual impairment, diabetes and heart failure (Collerton et al., 2016).

 

How can I help?

  1. Contribute your ‘unanswered questions’ about the:

ü  Symptoms

ü  Day-to-day life

ü  Medication

ü  Treatment

ü  Support or care

of people living with multiple health conditions in later life, specifically those that relate to hearing loss or hearing-related problems.

 

  1. Share this survey with older adults and anyone with a personal or professional connection to those who are aged 80+ with multiple health conditions.

 

Complete the Survey here: https://research.ncl.ac.uk/jlaprioritysetting/thesurvey/

This is open for three months, July-September 2017.

 

By ensuring that unanswered questions relating to aspects of hearing are well-represented in this process we can help raise the profile of hearing related problems in the multi-morbidity research agenda.

 

Twitter: @JLAAgeing

 

This James Lind Alliance Priority Setting Partnership is supported by the NIHR Newcastle Biomedical Research Centre, the NIHR Clinical Research Network, the NIHR and Engage FMS, Faculty of Medical Sciences Newcastle University and Age UK. Further information can be found here: https://research.ncl.ac.uk/jlaprioritysetting/ageingmultipleconditions/

 

 

 

BSA becomes a member of the Coalition for Collaborative Care

C4CC is a major alliance which is committed to improving care and support for people with long-term conditions. We bring together some of the sector’s most influential national groups and organisations alongside people living with long-term health conditions to champion a system-wide transformation in care and support.

Our vision for the future focuses on re-framing the relationship between a person with long-term health conditions and the practitioners supporting them. Specifically, the Coalition wants to create a better deal for people with long-term conditions through the three Cs – better Conversations, strong Communities and Co-production.

Partners will come together three times a year to share their work in this area, build connections and develop joint efforts; to be informed of relevant developments, have the opportunity to influence policymakers and others, advise on C4CC activity and get involved in C4CC projects.

 

Liz Midgley, BSA Chair says ”

I’m really please d to be able to tell you the BSA has been accepted as a partner with the Coalition for Collaborative Care.   C4CC is an alliance of partner organisations which is committed to improving care and support for people with long term conditions.  One of the main principles of their approach is enabling people to express their own needs and decide on their own priorities in partnership with professionals.  This person centred care will be an approach that works very well, and no doubt is already practiced, with  many of the people  seen by us who have hearing and balance disorders. 

 

The BSA is really looking forward to working as a partner with the C4CC.  We will have representation at meetings with other partners to share work and ideas, build connections, have the opportunity to influence policy makers and to get involved with C4CC projects.

 

If you would like to know more about the C4CC please see their website:-

 

www.coalitionforcollaborativecare.org.uk

British Society of Audiology and the Ida Institute are in collaboration!

The BSA is pleased to announce our collaboration with the Ida Institute on a new professional development initiative. The Ida Learning Hall courses on person-centered care will be offered as part of the BSA’s online learning community, BSA Grow.

The Ida Learning Hall currently offers two accredited learning plans that can be completed for CEUs, with a third area of study ready for release in the autumn. If you subscribe to the BSA bulletin, keep an eye out for updates from the Ida Learning Hall among the new resources featured each month, and check back with Ida for the latest developments.

BSA Grow includes a bank of materials such as webinars featuring international speakers, quarterly themed journal clubs, research round-ups, and learning modules including modules from the Ida Learning Hall.

“We are excited to be collaborating with the Ida Institute and we share a joint vision on online bite-sized learning for audiology professionals,” says BSA operations manager Laura Turton. “This partnership focuses on sharing and disseminating our resources and we believe that we can do so much more by collaborating together. The Ida resources are a good fit alongside the other resources from our own learning community, BSA Grow, which now has over 100 resources available to our members.”

The Health Foundation’s Toolkit for communicating your research

This toolkit is for researchers to help increase influence and impact in health and health care.

Section 1: Planning for impact

This section will help you plan your communications activity and focus your communications on where they can make the most impact.

Section 2: Communicating your research results

This section will help you adapt and present your findings in order to engage different audiences.

Section 3: Extending influence and widening impact

This section will help you understand how to engage three of the key audiences for research dissemination and achieve impact on policy and practice.

Section 4: Glossary of terms

This section provides an explanation of the terms used in this toolkit.

 

To access it please click here

Alliance for Useful Evidence – do you want to be part of a useful network that champions the use of evidence?

Are you interested in how the use of high quality evidence can inform decision-making and improve social outcomes for citizens? Do you believe in smarter use of evidence in social policy and practice?

 

If the answer is yes, then join the Alliance for Useful Evidence at no cost. We promote evidence informed policy and practice through advocacy, publishing research, convening events, and supporting individuals and organisations through advice and training. We work and partner with a range of organisations including:

 ·       European Commission

·       JPAL-Europe

·       What Works Centres

·       Public Health England

·       NSPCC

·       The Money Advice Service (MAS)

·       SOLACE

·       Northern Ireland Assembly

·       Carnegie UK Trust

·       National Governments

By joining our rapidly growing network of over 3,200+ individuals from across government, universities, charities, businesses, and local authorities in the UK and internationally, you can help us stimulate the demand and use of evidence, raise the quality of the debate, highlight good practice, and catalyse substantive discussions.

http://www.alliance4usefulevidence.org/join/

NHS England’s Clinical Entrepreneurial Programme – Now open to Healthcare Scientists

Are you a healthcare scientist with a great idea for a commercial, social or charitable enterprise? Are you passionate about continuing in clinical practice but dream of pursuing your entrepreneurial vision that will impact patients and change healthcare? The Clinical Entrepreneur Programme is for you! The programme is jointly managed by NHS England and Health Education England, and was developed with entrepreneurial clinicians, academic leaders and industry partners. Now all healthcare scientists who are developing clinical innovations or enterprises can also bid to become participants in this prestigious scheme.

https://www.england.nhs.uk/2017/07/entrepreneur-scheme-for-innovative-doctors-extended/

Clinical_Entrepreneurs_2017

CSOLetter_ClinEnt_2017

Report on the European Federation of Audiological Societies bi-annual congress and general assembly

The European Federation of Audiological Societies (http://www.efas.ws/index.htm) hosted their bi-annual congress and general assembly in Interlaken Switzerland on 7-10 June 2017.

The congress was attended by clinicians, researchers and students from all over Europe as well as Australia, the US, Israel, Turkey and South Africa. Key not talks included Dr Shelly Chadha from the WHO speaking about prevention of hearing loss and Professor Christine Petit, speaking about the genetics of hearing, Professor Tobias Moser speaking about light-based cochlear stimulation and Professor Ad Snick speaking about bone conduction hearing aids.  The 2019 EFAS congress will be in Lisbon, Portugal.

Dr Piers Dawes attended the general assembly as UK/BSA representative. The general assembly received reports from the EFAS school age hearing screening group. The school age hearing screening group involves a working group of 8 European countries and aims to identify optimal hearing screening methods and collect evidence for school age hearing screening to inform policy in Europe. The group has commenced collection of pilot data comparing incidence of hearing problems identified by school age hearing screening verses newborn hearing screening in 5 (Finland, Romania, Ireland, Netherlands, Belgium).

The EFAS working group on intellectual disability reported on completion of a survey of current practice in Europe. Based on responses from 23 European nations, current practice is limited and no no hearing screening programs for adults with intellectual disability were identified. The group is currently drafting recommendations for hearing screening and on-going audiological review for adults with learning disabilities. The group is working with the BSA’s Siobhan Brennan (CH SIG member and lead for the BSA’s learning disability guidelines, currently in development).

General assembly members voted on 3 proposals from Romania, Israel and Croatia for the 2021 EFAS congress. The 2021 congress will be in Croatia. Finally, Dr Francoise Sterkers-Artieres, an otolaryngologist based in Montpellier France, took over from Teresa Pitt (Cork, Ireland) as EFAS chair for a 2 year term.

Global Outreach SIG Survey

Are you interested in or have worked in global outreach audiology/hearing health? If yes, we’d love to hear from you.

 

Whilst we are lucky in the UK to have access to free audiology services on the NHS or the choice of seeing someone privately, most developing countries have little or no access at all to audiology or audiologists; relaying largely on support from abroad, often provided by voluntary organisations. Sadly, this can often be short term and unsustainable and standards of care can be questionable. There are more positively, NGOs and other companies that are working on or supporting developing longer term projects that are more sustainable, higher quality audiology services.  As The BSA’s Global Outreach Specialist Interest Group we want to promote higher standards of care and support longer term, sustainable audiology services globally. It’s a big, but very important challenge and right now we’re working together to find the best ways in which as a group we can be most useful and effective to this cause.

 

We know that we aren’t unique and the only ones who have interest or experience of working within global outreach for hearing health/audiology and we’d like to develop a network (database) to share information, updates about our work and may occassionally ask questions to help us make informed decisions about our areas of work. We would like to ask you a few short questions about you and you can sign up to join the network if you’d like to be involved!

 

Thanks for your time and for further information please contact Gemma Twitchen – bsaglobaloutreachchair@gmail.com

 

https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/525BDFQ

 

Clinical Facilitator in Audiology

 

College of Human and Health Sciences

Fixed term Clinical Facilitator in Audiology

Ref AC02253

Salary: £32958 to £34956 per annum together with USS benefits

Main Purpose of the Post

To deliver its top 20 ambition Swansea University is seeking to appoint a Clinical Facilitator in Audiology in the College of Human and Health Sciences.

The main purpose of the post is to support WEDS commissioned Healthcare Science (Audiology) students whilst on placement at hospitals across Wales. The aim is to ensure an effective and enjoyable experience in every case such that students on graduation are equipped with the necessary knowledge and skills to enter the Healthcare Science work force.

Main Duties:

1.Teaching (Enhanced)

 

  1. Research (Core)
  1. Management (Core)

To contribute to College management duties, for example:

Carry out relevant managerial duties associated with academic posts, for example, duties in relation to student recruitment, induction, teaching and assessment.

  1. General Duties

Staff appointed to Academic positions will be expected to develop and deliver a range of teaching material and will work closely with the Swansea Academy of Learning and Teaching (SALT – http://salt.swan.ac.uk/. SALT aims to enhance the student learning experience through sharing and promoting good practice.

 

Person Specification

Essential Criteria

 

Desirable Criteria

Background on College / School / Department

The successful applicant will join the Interprofessional Studies Department within the College of Human and Health Sciences. The Department is home to a number of Healthcare programmes at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. Undergraduate programmes are offered in Healthcare Sciences, Midwifery, Paramedic Science and Osteopathy. These professional programmes are highly respected by the various professional communities for the quality of graduates and for the contribution the staff make to these professions in the UK and abroad. Students on these programmes study within the University and on placements at hospitals across Wales where they gain their clinical skills. Before they attend placements however the students practice within the University in dedicated clinical suites within the Department where the very latest equipment is available to ensure the experience matches their work environment.

Informal enquiries to:

Mrs Chantal Patel, Head of Interprofessional Studies

01792 602220; T.M.C.Patel@swansea.ac.uk

Mr Barry Bardsley –Team Leader, Biomedical Sciences Team

01792 295276; B.Bardsley@swansea.ac.uk

 

Application process

Applicants are asked to provide a completed online application providing evidence against the essential criteria in the recruitment documentation.  Applicants should also attach to the application 2 separate documents:
1.  a Curriculum Vitae;
2.  a statement detailing your aspirations to enhance teaching and the student experience.

The academic career profiles are available at: http://www.swansea.ac.uk/personnel/promotions/academicpromotions/  and these provide indicative performance levels for all academic staff at Swansea University.  These criterion will be used in the recruitment process as well as promotions. Where there are numeric indicators these will be considered in light of the stage of career, hours of work and other commitments .  This may be personal circumstances or work related activities outside of academia such as in industry or a clinical setting.

 

Please note this is a fixed term post until July 2019 and secondment opportunities will be considered.

To apply for this job please click on the link below:

http://www.swansea.ac.uk/personnel/jobs/details.php?nPostingID=5057&nPostingTargetID=8442&option=52&sort=DESC&respnr=1&ID=QHUFK026203F3VBQB7VLO8NXD&LOV5=7976&JOBADLG=UK&Resultsperpage=20&lg=UK&mask=suext

The closing date for this post is 10th August 2017.

Hearing Link & Hearing Dogs merger

Hearing Link and Hearing Dogs for Deaf People Merger

News Release:

Hearing Link and Hearing Dogs for Deaf People merge HRH The Princess Royal, Royal Patron of charities Hearing Link and Hearing Dogs for Deaf People, today attended the Hearing Dogs Board Meeting where the Chairman announced its forthcoming harmonious merger with Hearing Link on 1st August 2017. The Princess Royal will continue as Royal Patron of the merged charities.

In common with many small charities, the challenging and competitive fundraising environment has proved extremely difficult for Hearing Link. By merging with Hearing Dogs, and incorporating Hearing Link as a distinct service within the larger charity, Hearing Link’s future work is secured and they can plan with confidence to deliver life-changing services to ever-increasing numbers of people.

Hearing Link’s name will not change, and their services will continue to run as before, but with the stability of a much larger charity to strengthen their work.

The merger between Hearing Link and Hearing Dogs for Deaf People means that even more people with hearing loss will have wider access to advice and support about their hearing. The charities’ work complement each other, helping people adjust to the practical and emotional challenges that hearing loss can bring, leading to increased independence and confidence – and ultimately significantly improved overall wellbeing.

Lorraine Gailey, Chief Executive of Hearing Link, says: “Our values and aims are so closely aligned, it was a natural move for us to come together to create a stable future for Hearing Link, where we can reach even more people and their families, offering even better support for as long as they need us.”

Hearing Link’s Chairman, Nigel Williams, agrees: “This development, as funding cuts continue to bite, ensures our ongoing activities are financially sustainable within a strong and effective organisation. It enables to ensure all the efforts generously provided by our volunteers, and all the funds kindly donated by our supporters are used to pursue our charitable purpose. We can carry on doing what we are best at – working to enable people to participate fully and confidently in life, whatever their level of hearing.”

Michele Jennings, Chief Executive of Hearing Dogs, says: “The wealth of knowledge and expertise within Hearing Link will now be made available to even more people through the development opportunities provided by the combination of our more than 100 years of experience in helping deaf people.”

For media enquiries and interview requests, please contact:
Lorraine Gailey, Chief Executive
Email: lorraine.gailey@hearinglink.orgi
Tel/SMS: 07912 268901
Notes to Editors
Frequently Asked Questions

For more details about the merger, visit https://www.hearinglink.org/uncategorized/hearing-link-hearing-dogs-merger/

About Hearing Link
Hearing Link is a UK charity for people who have developed any level of hearing loss and their family and friends. It provides information and support and puts them in contact with others who have similar experiences. It aims to give people the knowledge, skills, confidence and contacts so they can more easily manage the practical and emotional challenges that hearing loss brings. It works across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. For more information, visit http://www.hearinglink.org

About Hearing Dogs for Deaf People

Hearing Dogs for Deaf People is a registered charity that trains dogs to alert deaf people to household sounds and anger signals such as the doorbell, telephone and smoke alarm – providing life-changing independence and confidence. Hearing Dogs provide a national service and no charge is made to recipients. www.hearingdogs.org.uk

hearX Group launches world-first diagnostic smartphone otoscope – Sign up for up to 35% off

ADVERTISEMENT BY hearScope

 

A world-first smartphone diagnostic otoscope, hearScope, will be launched via IndieGoGo on 1 August!

This is very exciting news for the hearX Group who continues to broaden their product ‘scope’ in the quest to provide healthy hearing for everyone, everywhere, with their clinically validated smartphone hearing test solutions.

To date the hearX Group has provided access to hearing healthcare to more than 70 000 people who would not normally have had this service, through their cost-effective, user-friendly smartphone technologies.

Complications from middle ear infection (Otitis Media) are a leading cause of preventable hearing loss in the developing world, affecting 33 out of 10 000 people globally. Ninety five percent of children will have an ear infection before the age of three and most of them will not have access to diagnosis or treatment. hearScope offers a swift and reliable solution that enables every healthcare provider to make an accurate diagnosis every time.

Simply put, a high-quality variable magnification otoscope “pen” (a medical device which is used to look into the ears) connects to a smartphone running the hearScope application. The result is a clear picture of the eardrum which can be used to accurately diagnose the problem. The images are as good as the sophisticated microscopes that ENT specialists use, making hearScope the ultimate diagnostic companion for healthcare providers.

What makes it revolutionary is that it is simple and affordable enough for a parent to use on their own smartphone.

hearScope was first revealed at Africa Health 2017 and will now be launched globally via a crowdfunding campaign on IndieGoGo on 1 August at 19:00 (UTC +2).

To sign up and receive up to 35% discount on the hearScope when it launches, click here >.

With this campaign, the hearX Group hopes to raise $15 000 to assist with putting the product into the hands of the world. They are also hoping that organisations and individuals will use the campaign to donate hearScopes to those who need it most.

You can qualify for a discount of up to 35% for a hearScope when the IndieGoGo campaign goes live by signing up for this promotion via the landing page! The hearX Group invites you to be part of the exciting journey of creating access to ear and hearing healthcare by supporting this initiative.

Not only will you will be one of the first in the world to own a hearScope, but you will also be making a significant social impact!

The hearX Group’s team of international experts, researchers and engineers has been hard at work over the past three years developing this incredible product. They now need your support to put hearScope into the hands of the world.

 

 

 

 

REGAIN – an opportunity for people with hearing loss to take part in a clinical trial

REGAIN – an opportunity for people with hearing loss to take part in a clinical trial

A team of researchers and clinicians at UCL’s Ear Institute and the Royal National Throat Nose and Ear Hospital are inviting people with hearing loss to participate in a ground breaking clinical trial to test a new drug treatment for hearing loss.  Currently the only option for people with inner ear hearing loss is to wear a hearing aid, or, for those with severe to profound hearing loss, a cochlear implant. These devices help people to communicate, but do not treat the underlying cause of their hearing loss. With one in six people in the UK having hearing loss, there is an urgent need for new treatments. The researchers of the REGAIN project (REgeneration of inner ear hair cells with GAmma-secretase Inhibitors) have worked for years to develop a new drug that could regenerate inner ear (cochlear) hair cells, and they are now at the stage of testing if the drug is safe to use and if it affects the ability to hear in people.

For more information, please visit the Action on Hearing Loss website, where the REGAIN team have written a guest blog about participating in the trial – just search REGAIn

https://www.actiononhearingloss.org.uk

BSA Grow Is Here!

We are delighted to be launching BSA Grow  which is a new membership benefit.

 

BSA Grow is currently being launched and we aim to reach our members with log in details shortly.

Please do check your junk folder to ensure log in details have not been delivered there in error.

We are aiming for all BSA members to have their log in details by no later than 20th July 2017.

Have your say on future collaborative work

Have your say on future collaborative work

One of BSA’s core values is to be openly collaborative across the hearing and balance science sector and members have often asked us about joint working with the BAA and BSHAA. To help us find out how we can best proceed we need you to complete a short survey, which will be open until 25th July at 9am

https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/NNJZGRR

Health Foundation’s Infographic: the social determinants of health

This month the Health Foundation are launching a new series of infographics and accompanying blogs and commentaries to describe and explain the social determinants of health in an accessible and engaging way.

These determinants include political, social, economic, environmental and cultural factors which shape the conditions in which we are born, grow, live, work and age. Creating a healthy population requires greater action on these factors, not simply on treating ill health further down stream.

The first infographic shows the extent to which health is primarily shaped by factors outside the direct influence of health care and invites us to look at this bigger picture. It also highlights the gap of almost 20 years in health expectancy between people living in the most and least deprived areas of the UK – a gap that is explained not by our ability to see a doctor, but by differences in our experience of the things that make us healthy including good work, education, housing, resources, our physical environment and social connections.

In a companion blog, Sir Michael Marmot, director of the Institute of Health Equity at University College, London describes how poor social conditions give rise to what he terms ‘an epidemic of disempowerment’, and he illustrates this through the life of Glasgow-born ‘Jimmy’ whose experiences of disadvantage across the life course lead to his poor health and the risk of an early death. He also outlines six areas for action on the social determinants of health to improve the opportunities for people like Jimmy and help close the health gap.

Call for interest in PhDs amongst Audiologists and other Clinicians

The NIHR Nottingham Biomedical Research Centre is establishing a register of allied health professionals who are interested in undertaking  PhD studies at the NBRC. The register will enable NBRC researchers to engage directly with interested clinicians about relevant opportunities for research funding.

To join the register, please email sandra.smith@nottingham.ac.uk with the following information:

We will then get back to you with further follow-on information.

We often find that funding calls come out with short deadlines. Having a register would enable a rapid response to some of these calls.

Our ultimate aim is to use this register as the foundation for an online community to share knowledge, experience and to promote upcoming opportunities for research, and introduce clinicians interested in research to relevant researchers within and beyond the Nottingham BRC.

For further informal enquiries, please contact Dr Mel Ferguson, Research Lead, melanie.ferguson@nottingham.ac.uk

NIHR Nottingham Biomedical Research Centre

Questionnaire on Vestibulotoxicity

Invitation To Complete A Questionnaire On Vestibulotoxicity

I am an ENT consultant currently undertaking a research project as part requirement for an MSc in otology and audiology in UCL. I am  looking into how units in the United Kingdom monitor aminoglycoside vestibulotoxicity with a view to seeing if a cost effective means of detecting and managing vestibulotoxicity can be developed.

Presently, there are no validated questionnaires or set protocols for managing patients with vestibulotoxicity so I have designed one which has been reviewed by a panel of experts which I believe would help answer the research questions.

I would most obliged if you could tick the most appropriate response or responses. The question should take no more than 15 minutes.

https://goo.gl/forms/lx6ZZp7DtPWQxe1o2

Anthony Owa FRCS (ORL-HNS) FWACS

New documentation of interest to commissioners

Two documents relating to adult rehabilitation are now available through this website http://www.thebsa.org.uk/public-engagement/commissioners/

  1. Adult Rehabilitation Services, BSA Information for Service Commissioners (2017)
  2. Evidence on the Bilateral Fitting of Hearing Aids to Adults (2017).

These documents should be of interest to both commissioners and members engaged in providing services. It is anticipated that these documents will be updated as new evidence becomes available in coming months.

 

John Day, BSA Trustee and Lead on Advisory matters

Update from ISA: World Hearing Day 2017 Activity Repor

A message from Dr Shelly Chadha of WHO:

 

Thank you for your support and contribution to activities for this year’s World Hearing Day. A brief activity report on the Day can be downloaded from http://www.who.int/pbd/deafness/world-hearing-day/WorldHearingDay2017ActivityReport.pdf?ua=1

 

The theme for World Hearing Day 2018 is ‘Hear the Future’ which will discuss the projected rise in the prevalence of hearing loss in the coming years. Again, we look forward to future collaboration to raise awareness about hearing loss.

Office of the Chief Scientific Officer Website now live

The CSO website has been published this week on the NHS England webpage.

Access the site to learn about healthcare science and how the Office of the CSO drives the contribution of science to health to ensure the NHS can deliver its Constitution commitment to ‘work at the limits of science’. As well as keeping you up to date with healthcare science news, there are also links to their publications, events, and the opportunity to subscribe to the CSO bulletin. Watch this space for our upcoming CSO Blog.

IDA INSTITUTE INTRODUCES NEW E-LEARNING PLATFORM

The Ida Institute has introduced an entirely new eLearning universe for hearing care professionals. The innovative Ida Learning Hall will offer bite-size learning modules, which will enable hearing care professionals to easily incorporate learning and knowledge sharing into time-challenged schedules.

The Ida Learning Hall is a fresh approach to learning, conceived as a virtual meeting place where hearing care professionals can go to learn more about person-centred care.

We have created a new universe that caters to the different learning needs of hearing care professionals, adds Lise Lotte Bundesen, Managing Director of the Ida Institute. Learning should be easy and engaging, and we believe that the Ida Learning Hall does just that.

The Learning Hall offers bite-sized learning so users can update their skills on-the-go and invites them to connect, interact and share knowledge in dedicated online communities.

We looked into how hearing care professionals share and find knowledge, and when and where they prefer to learn, says Lise Lotte Bundesen. What we found is that learning occurs mostly after work hours, such as on the couch, on the bus or in the car. The reason why people seek learning is that they have an immediate need or problem to solve, and a majority prefer to receive learning in short bursts and bite-sized.

The platform also offers longer Learning Plans. Users can accumulate the short, bite-sized lessons over time to complete a module and obtain CEU/CPD points from accrediting organizations. New learning modules will be developed on continuous bases in addition to the following Learning Plans currently available:

  1. Client Engagement and Motivation Tools:

This Client Engagement and Motivation Learning Plan will provide you with tools for understanding how client readiness affects decision-making. It will provide you with structured and proven methods of exploring client ambivalence, and more importantly, you will be better able to understand your client’s internal motivation to act on your recommendations.

Link: http://idalearninghall.idainstitute.com/learning/plans/3549

 

  1. Living Well: Managing Hearing Loss in Daily Life:

In this Learning Plan you will learn to use the living well tool to actively engage your clients in a structured way, to set goals that improve daily living situations. Specifically, the Living Well Tool provides a step-by-step process that allows you to understand your clients unique needs and preferences regarding the activities in which they enjoy participating. By understanding your clients unique needs and preferences, the living well tool also allows you to identify what living well means to clients. As a result, the Living Well Tool allows hearing care professionals to provide individualized, personalized and more effective care.

Link: http://idalearninghall.idainstitute.com/learning/plans/3758

 

To explore the Ida Learning Hall, visit www.idalearninghall.idainstitute.com

 

The Ida Learning Hall is a free and open resource, which is accessible with an Ida Institute account. To create your own Ida account, please visit: http://idainstitute.com/registration/ Â

 

About the Ida Institute

The Ida Institute is an independent, non-profit organization based in Denmark.

Ida’s mission is to develop and integrate person-centred care in hearing rehabilitation. Together with hearing care professionals from around the world, the institute works to develop knowledge and strengthen the counselling process, enabling people to express their individual needs and preferences and take ownership of their hearing care.

Read more at www.idainstitute.com

Protecting the bandwidth used by the hearing impaired: an open letter to policy makers and regulators from British and Irish Hearing Instrument Manufacturers Association (BIHIMA)

World’s health ministers adopt resolution on the prevention of deafness and hearing loss

The 70th World Health Assembly adopted a new resolution on the prevention of deafness and hearing loss. 20 Member States, several commenting on behalf of many other Member States in their respective regions, and NGOs including CBM and the International Society of Audiology, commented favourably on the resolution during the discussion.

 

Approximately 360 million people live with disabling hearing loss including 32 million children. Hearing loss prevalence is increasing globally due to the growth in population of older adults, one third of whom have hearing loss; the continued high prevalence of chronic ear diseases; and the increasing practice of listening at high volume to unsafe levels of sound for prolonged periods, putting the hearing of over one billion young people (aged 12-35 years) at risk, among other causes.

 

Overall it is estimated that around half of hearing loss can be prevented through such measures as immunizing against childhood diseases; preventing infections; promoting safe childbirth; avoiding the use of certain drugs; and reducing exposure to loud sounds. In addition those who have hearing loss can benefit greatly from timely and appropriate interventions, including the use of hearing aids, cochlear implants and other assistive devices; captioning and sign language; and other forms of educational and social support. Despite this, those in need are often unable to access such services. As such unaddressed hearing loss continues to have a high impact on individuals and societies, with an annual global cost of $750 billion annually.

 

“Too many people are suffering unnecessarily from hearing loss,” says Dr Etienne Krug, Director of the WHO Department for the Management of Noncommunicable Diseases, Disability, Violence and Injury Prevention. “Unless action is taken, the numbers will continue to rise as populations age and young people continue to engage in listening practices which are harmful to their hearing. It is urgent to take action. Fortunately, we have in hand a range of effective and cost-effective tools to prevent, detect and treat hearing loss.”

 

Through the resolution, Member States are urged to integrate strategies for ear and hearing care within the framework of their primary health care systems; establish training programmes for the development of human resources in the field; implement screening programmes for early identification; make high-quality, affordable hearing devices accessible to all who need them; and implement regulations for the control of noise in various settings.

 

The resolution requests the WHO Director-General to prepare a world report on ear and hearing care; develop a toolkit and provide technical support to Member States on the above; support development of safe listening standards; and undertake advocacy through World Hearing Day, which is held annually on 3 March. The resolution also requests WHO to report on progress in implementation of this resolution to the 72nd World Health Assembly.

WHO.World Heath Assembly Resolution on Hearing Loss.30.05.17

Diary of work in Malawi 4 – the trainees become the trainers

Dry season has arrived, we don’t expect rain now until December!  We are actually heading into winter, this morning I saw one of the guards wrapped up in coat, hat, gloves and scarf.  Only his eyes were visible.  It was 20 degrees…

 

I continue to be pleased at how the skills of the staff at the hearing clinic are progressing.  We had some occupational health staff from a factory come for training and it made me so happy to watch Blessings teaching them things that I remember teaching him.  We have also been working with the main clinic to try to ensure standardized treatment of ear infections.  This isn’t something I would have much to do with as an audiologist in the UK, but here we are expected to identify them and recommend appropriate treatment to the clinical officers.  Blessings and I gave a presentation to the doctors, nurses and clinical officers, it seems we’ve both learned a great deal about the many different types of ear infection that are so prevalent here.  It’s not uncommon to see chronic suppurative otitis media that has advanced to the stage where the patient has no eardrum left, particularly in patients with HIV; fungal infections are also common and can take a long time to treat effectively.

 

I sat back and waited last week, as one of the staff carried out an ABR by himself, testing an adult with suspected ANSD.  I just asked him to come and show me the results when he was done.  I well remember the moment when I was left for the first time with a patient to manage an ABR by myself, and I wanted Kamuzu to experience this too, with the knowledge that I wasn’t far away if he needed me.  He made some mistakes, but got the results required, and it was an excellent learning experience.  Usually we’re seeing babies or difficult-to-test children, and for this we still work together.  Due to the newborn hearing screening programme, we’re now doing at least one ABR a week, which is excellent practice.  The first baby with a hearing loss to come through the newborn screening was identified last week.

 

 

Outreach news – we hope we have set up a regular clinic now at Kasungu, which is a couple of hour’s drive north of where we are in the capital Lilongwe.  We were invited by the hospital there to visit for 2 days; they provided us with food and accommodation, 3 rooms to work in (one with electricity!), and a space for our audiotrailer.  Of course, no outreach is complete without the inevitable vehicle problems.  We had almost reached our destination when the wheel came off the audiotrailer.  Fortunately Gospel is an excellent driver and stopped the landrover safely; it was daylight on a safe stretch of flat road, a very good place for a breakdown.  The staff knew what to do – this has happened before – so I stood and watched as they efficiently jacked up the trailer and prepared for the repair.  We knew that if I went with the landrover into Kasungu to look for a mechanic, the price would immediately go up (the white person effect), so I remained with Kamuzu, ‘guarding’ the trailer.  Sitting in the gentle sunshine, eating crisps, chatting and watching the world go by, it really was quite a relaxing experience!  At one point we could hear the drumbeat of the Gule Wamkulu (a secret and occasionally threatening cult) and Kamuzu explained that if they came our way then we should probably move, but they remained just within earshot and all was fine.

 

 

The outreach was really excellent, the staff were so welcoming and accommodating; on the second day a large number of staff arrived, brought by the hospital administrator for ‘orientation’ so that they could see what we were doing.  Gospel did a wonderful impromptu tour of our set-up with them.  A number of the hospital staff came to us for treatment, or brought their relatives, and it was good to be able to demonstrate to them the value of our services.  The accommodation they provided us with was a guesthouse in the grounds of Kamuzu Academy.  I guess this school is the Eton of Malawi; going through the gates was like entering another world.  We were given breakfast in the school refectory, and entering it was like walking into the dining hall of a Cambridge college – the same arches, parquet flooring, long wooden tables, high table, everything.  Well, almost everything.  Kamuzu was the life-president of Malawi about 20 years ago, he was from Kasungu and it appears that this academy, which was his pride and joy, has gone to seed slightly since he died.  The tables may have been excellent quality, but the chairs were the regular plastic garden chairs you find everywhere, and the tablecloth we had at the high table was a bedsheet that had been cut in half and sewn together, sides-to-middle.  I am pretty good at eating everything that comes my way, but the excessively sweetened rice porridge was just too much for me, something I regretted 8 hours later when we were still working and hadn’t had time for lunch!  Yes, the outreach was busy, which is how we like it, we think that the team of 4 of us saw over 120 patients in the approximate 18 working hours of our 2-day outreach.

 

Coming up over the next few weeks: we have a group of American students visiting for 2 weeks to do outreach work and some teaching.  I’ll be going with them to supervise a 4-day outreach in Mzuzu.  Once they’re gone we will be returning to Kasungu, and we’re also planning a one-day outreach to Dzaleka refugee camp.  Dzaleka is long-term home to thousands of people; the clinic used to visit quite regularly, but we haven’t been for some time.  We were contacted to ask if we could do some work in the camp, and so Blessings did a day of hearing screening there.  From this he identified many people who need complex testing at the clinic, including a family of 9 children who all have hearing and visual impairment.  Because of the challenges of transport, all 9 children (plus interpreter) will come to the clinic at the same time – that’s going to be an interesting day!

 

Research Priorities for Learning Difficulties

Research Priorities for Learning Difficulties is a project to identify the top 10 research priorities for learning difficulties amongst children and young people.

Across Scotland we’re asking people who have learning difficulties, their families and the professionals working alongside them, to complete our survey telling us what they would want researchers to find out about learning difficulties.

If you’re affected by learning difficulties, the questions you want researchers to explore might relate to causes, diagnosis, the day-to-day effects, ways of supporting children and young people or something completely different – it’s up to you.

 

What do we mean by learning difficulties?

By ‘learning difficulties’ we mean a problem of understanding or an emotional difficulty that affects a person’s ability to learn, get along with others and follow convention.

On a day-to-day basis, that can be many things – struggling with reading, writing or numeracy, not being able to concentrate for long periods, losing track of time, forgetting what has just been learned or acting impulsively.

If diagnosed, a learning difficulty may be associated with many conditions such as dyslexia or autism spectrum disorder (ASD) etc.

 

Who can take part in the survey?

Please complete the survey to tell us your research priorities if you are:

You do not need to have a diagnosis of a learning difficulty to take part in the survey.
The top 10 research priorities will inform future research work into learning difficulties including the work of The Salvesen Mindroom Centre.

For more information about this project please download the information sheet below.

 

Complete the survey online, download a form below or for a paper copy of the form, contact:

Dr. Ai Keow Lim
Tel: 0131 536 8898
Email: LD_research@ed.ac.uk
Write:
Dr Ai Keow Lim
The Salvesen Mindroom Centre
c/o Child Life & Health
University of Edinburgh
20 Sylvan Place
Edinburgh EH9 1UW

 

Survey closes: 31 July 2017

Key document downloads

Survey and Information Sheet

Children & Young People’s Survey and Information Sheet

Poster

Leaflet

The Salvesen Mindroom Centre, formerly known as Mindroom, is a Scottish charity that combines research, education and outreach support for families living with learning difficulties. The centre works in collaboration with the University of Edinburgh on research into learning difficulties.

‘Ears, Nose & Throat’ campaign in celebration of Deaf Awareness Week

To celebrate Deaf Awareness Week Mediaplanet is launching the 2017 Ears, Nose & Throat campaign which can be found in the The Guardian newspaper and online at http://bit.ly/2rn6PP6

Read motivating insight from thought leaders and learn more about the wide range of conditions that affect everyone from newborns to the elderly.

EARSII Ear Sim Questionnaire – You are invited to participate

You may be aware of a current research project that is aiming to develop the next generation of ear simulators for audiological applications, particularly for meeting the requirements for neonates, infants and children which are currently not properly addressed. The project is known as EARS-II and details can be found here. Indeed, you may have responded to an earlier questionnaire during the initial development phase of this work in 2012/13.

The research has now produced some outline specifications for ear simulators in five age ranges, spanning neonates to adults, and prototypes for a neonatal occluded-ear simulator.

The next steps are; to finalise these specifications, extend the designs to accommodate the wide range of transducers used in audiological applications, prepare new International Standards and develop guidelines for the use of these ear simulators.

The project team would therefore like to further involve the stakeholder community to ensure that the final outcomes from the project meet the potential needs of users, both in terms of effectiveness, in ensuring appropriate measurement quality, and efficiency of implementation.

We would therefore be extremely grateful to receive feedback from you on some key questions we have raised, or indeed on any aspect of the proposed development and implementation of next generation ear simulators.

In the questions attached please mark the response that is closest to your opinion. If you wish to mark more than one answer, this is acceptable, but please also indicate your responses in order of preference, and add a note to explain your multiple choices. Please underline your preferred answer.

Please return your complete EARSII Ear Sim Questionnaire  to richard.barham@AcousticSensorNetworks.co.uk

 Thank you for taking the time to complete this questionnaire. Your input will be extremely valuable for the next stages of this research.

If you would like to follow the progress of the EARS-II project, please visit the website and register to receive our regular newsletter. Alternatively, if you would like to discuss a specific issue, you are most welcome to contact me directly or another member of the project team via the website.

 Many thanks

Richard Barham

richard.barham@AcousticSensorNetworks.co.uk

http://www.ears-project.eu/empir/ears2.html

Member Awards & Recognition as BSA turns 50

Do you know of any members who have worked hard for the BSA? Do you sit on the BSA Council / a BSA committee or a Special Interest Group and have worked alongside some excellent members? In the year that the BSA turns 50 we want to honour members for their outstanding contributions to our work. So please think about anyone you have worked with at the BSA who you think deserves this acknowledgement.

 

Some ideas for recognition are listed below, but if you have any of your own ideas we want to hear from you as well.

 

 

All you need to do is simply send the name of your nomination and the reasons behind your nomination to Laura Turton, Operations Manager by 1st August 2017 on laura@thebsa.org.ukAll nominations will then be discussed by a panel of BSA members. Awards will be awarded the week commencing 4th September 2017, which is when the 50th celebration will be a focus.

Update on Practice Guidelines for Aural Care (Wax Removal)

Following an initial period of consultation, the draft BSA wax removal guidance was removed to allow further consultation from additional experts in the field.  This decision was taken to ensure that the draft guidance incorporated as many expert views as possible.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) are incorporating guidance relating to wax removal into their ongoing work on hearing loss.  We have therefore taken the decision to pause further development of our guidance until publication of the NICE guidance at the end of the year.  This will avoid any potential for conflicting guidance in the field of ear wax removal.

MEMBERSHIP CONSULTATION – APD Position Statement & Practice Guidance 2017

This document is no longer out for consultation and will be published in 2018.

 

 

 

Aminoglycoside-induced vestibular toxicity in children- optimal detection procedure – SURVEY

Would you like to take part in a survey?  This study is being conducted under the supervision of Dr Louisa Murdin and Dr Raj Nandi, as part of an Msc Advanced Audiology research project at UCL Ear Institute. The title of the project is: Aminoglycoside-induced vestibular toxicity in children- optimal detection procedure.

The aim of the survey is to study awareness and current practice among relevant professional groups. Data collected will help to identify points of good practice across the UK.

The survey will take you approximately 5 minutes to complete. Your participation is entirely voluntary and you can withdraw at any time during the survey by closing the browser window.

There are no known risks associated with taking part in this survey; however, as with any online related activity the risk of a breach is always possible.  To the best of our ability your answers in this study will remain confidential.  We have minimised any risks by anonymising the survey and by not asking for any sensitive information.

If you’re interested in taking part, please click on the following link (or copy and paste it into your browser) to access the online survey:

https://opinio.ucl.ac.uk/s?s=48926

Would you be so kind as to complete the survey by 30 June 2017. In case of any problems while taking the survey or for more information, please contact Joy Nebo (joy.nebo.14@ucl.ac.uk)

Thank you for giving your time to complete the survey,

 

Joy Nebo

joy.nebo.14@ucl.ac.uk

Consultation – BSA Practice Guidance on Aural Care (Wax Removal)

Following a number of comments, we have decided to close the consultation on the first draft of the BSA Wax Removal Practice Guidelines.  This is to allow further contribution from practitioners employing a range of wax removal techniques.

 

 

Calls for nominations for Honorary members now being taken

Do you know someone who should be considered for BSA Honorary life membership of the BSA? Is there anyone who stands out to you as a member with an outstanding record of service to Audiology or the BSA?

We are now taking nominations for this honour. Please complete the attached form and send it through to bsa@thebsa.org.uk

BSA Honorary Life Membership Criteria

BSA Honorary Life Membership nomination form

The deadline for this is by Friday 2nd June 2017

 

Diary of work in Malawi 3 – April and the rain continues

April, and the rains continue.  The weather here is of constant interest, rain at the right time means life, too much rain, too little rain or rain at the wrong time could easily lead to loss of life.  We are worried that it should be stopping now, but ‘hungry season’ is over, the maize grown on campus has been harvested and every now and then it comes to the hospital kitchen for us.  We even had fresh beans and peanuts today!  

A few weeks ago we saw a 9-month old boy who I suspected had Down syndrome.  I arranged for him to be seen by a paediatrician and he has been officially diagnosed.  This led to me having a conversation with the manager of a rehab organization working with children with disabilities.  We talked about the link between Down syndrome and hearing loss, which resulted in her sending us 8 children in one week!  We identified a number with hearing loss, and it was excellent practice for the staff to see so many children with the same syndrome at one time.  Next week one of the trainees will be presenting a monitoring protocol he is developing for people with Down syndrome, which we hope will be implemented by the end of the month.  I am passionate about supporting people with learning disabilities, so developing this link with the Children of the Blessings Trust (an amazing organization) is very special to me.

The newborn hearing screening pilot programme started in December is developing into quite a major project, with a number of babies requiring specialist testing.  So far every baby we’ve tested appears to have middle ear effusion, leading to complicated testing, which isn’t helped by our extremely frequent power cuts.  I’m finding it quite stressful at the moment, and have some reservations about how feasible it is to continue the project, but for now it goes on.

I am responsible for covering the newborn screening at weekends, and one thing I like is the chance to roam the whole hospital site, looking for babies.  I am becoming accustomed to seeing the hospital laundry (including surgical scrubs) spread out on the grass to dry.  It is interesting too, to have glimpses into the culture surrounding birth which is so different from my own.  Here a new mother will have a family member (the guardian) with her at all times.  Guardians are provided with a bench or sometimes a mat to sleep on, and they often seem to be more actively involved in the care of the baby than the mother.  The guardians appear to be responsible for providing food, I haven’t seen any evidence of the hospital providing food for patients. 

One time recently I went to get my lunch from the hospital kitchen.  Lots of people were sitting outside under the tree and no-one was eating, but I was late so didn’t take much notice of this.  I rushed into the kitchen all apologetic, only to hear that the food wasn’t ready yet.  As I waited outside, an ambulance reversed up to the doors to the corridor next to the kitchen.  I leaned against the wall watching, idly pondering on what happens here when a patient dies, given that we have no mortuary,  then I realized I was about to find out.  The people under the tree were relatives of a young woman who had just died.  She was stretchered into the ambulance and then her mother was expected to travel in the back of the ambulance with the body to the central hospital which has a mortuary.  It seems the culture surrounding death here is also different from my own!  Our food was delayed out of respect for the family, the cooks (very reasonably) didn’t want to serve until the body had been removed.

Travelling around Lilongwe is still something I enjoy.  We were in a traffic jam recently and my eyes were drawn to a man selling shoes.  He had 2 pairs of shoes for sale.  Now, clearly you’re more likely to sell your wares if you display them on your head, so the man had a single shoe on his head, the other 3 in his hand, then every couple of minutes he switched them around.  How can such a sales technique earn a living?  Then there’s the man who stands at the side of the road holding up a single puppy for sale.  He seems to be there all the time, clearly he has a supply of young puppies, but is there really such a demand?  I guess there must be.

I have been thinking this week of the ways of life here that would seem so strange in the UK:

Whenever you go out in the evening, you have to remember to put bugspray on your feet. Of course you do, no evening is complete without the scent of ‘l’eau d’afrique’, as a friend calls it.

The water supply is now a lot better than it was when I arrived, but we still have to filter our drinking water.  It’s hot here, we drink a lot.  I spend a lot of time setting up water to filter (with the world’s slowest filter system), storing it and filtering more.  It probably takes about an hour a day, but I’m quite adept now at keeping the system going while doing other things. 

Our shower is out of action, it has been for some months.  Fortunately I have kind neighbours who allow me to use theirs.  In return I keep their water tank system running smoothly (which works in my favour too, otherwise they’d run out of water for my shower!).

Today at the clinic we had a power cut and the back-up generator failed, so we ended up seeing a dizzy patient in the waiting room.  A child came in needing attention, so he was seen in our tech room (that being the only other room available with any kind of natural light).  Then we had an important guest of the college come in, disturbing my consultation again, and also requiring a guided tour.  Fortunately otoscopes come in handy as torches!  Showing around a distinguished guest in the dark is run-of-the-mill to us now.  Patients generally seem remarkably unperturbed when the power goes out.  Can you imagine a small child in England, in a room with no windows, when there’s a sudden and total black-out?  I’ve not seen one child here even remotely upset by it.

All in all I continue to be fascinated by the work here, with the endless challenges of complex patients, limited testing facilities and an appointment system that’s only about 50% functional because many patients have no way of knowing what time it is. 

I leave you with a photo of ‘Faith’*, one of the children seen recently in our dedicated clinic for children with Down syndrome.  She loved our toys, and even more she loved having her photo taken!

The Ida Institute introduces new e-Learning Platform and Telecare tools at AudiologyNow!2017


The Ida Institute will introduce an entirely new eLearning universe for hearing care professionals and newly expanded Telecare tools for clients at AudiologyNOW! 2017. The innovative Ida Learning Hall will offer bite-size learning modules that enable hearing care professionals to easily incorporate learning and knowledge-sharing into time-challenged schedules. Two new Telecare tools now available on Ida’s easy-to-access online platform will support hearing care professionals in extending person-centered care beyond the clinic.

 

Ida Learning Hall – Learning On-the-Go

The Ida Learning Hall is a fresh approach to learning, conceived as a virtual meeting place where hearing care professionals can go to learn more about person-centered care.

“We have created a new universe that caters to the different learning needs of hearing care professionals,” adds Lise Lotte Bundesen, Managing Director of the Ida Institute. “Learning should be easy and engaging, and we believe that the Ida Learning Hall does just that.”

The Learning Hall offers bite-sized learning so users can update their skills on-the-go and invites them to connect, interact and share knowledge in dedicated online communities.

We looked into how hearing care professionals share and find knowledge, and when and where they prefer to learn,” says Lise Lotte Bundesen. “What we found is that learning occurs mostly after work hours, such as on the couch, on the bus or in the car. The reason why people seek learning is that they have an immediate need or problem to solve, and a majority prefer to receive learning in short bursts and bite-sized.”

The platform also offers longer learning modules.  Users can accumulate the short, bite-sized lessons over time to complete a module and obtain CEU/CPD points from accrediting organizations.

To explore the Ida Learning Hall, visit http://www.idalearninghall.idainstitute.com

 

New Telecare Tools for Clients

Ida Telecare is a collection of online tools that allow hearing care professionals to extend the reach of their care beyond the appointment. The tools, developed in close collaboration with academics and clinicians from around the world, help clients to manage hearing loss and prepare for appointments with their hearing care professionals.

The first Telecare Tools were launched in 2016 in response to a growing demand for online tools and services in audiology. Ida is now broadening the collection of tools with the addition of two new resources:

The Dilemma Game helps people with hearing loss deal with difficult communication situations. Using real life examples from Ida’s extensive ethnographic resource collection, the tool stimulates the users’ thinking and encourages them to come up with their own strategies for managing challenging situations.

The Tinnitus Thermometer is an easy-to-use online tool which allows users to describe how they are experiencing tinnitus and to help them articulate their feelings about this complex condition. The tool is part of a complete collection of online resources designed to support hearing care professionals working with tinnitus patients.

“The emergence of telehealth is the result of a rapidly growing on-demand culture affecting the hearing care sector today,” says Lise Lotte Bundesen. “We are developing our telehealth offering to enable hearing care professionals to embrace this trend and to enhance the quality of counseling by applying methods and tools based on person-centered care.”

All tools in the Ida Telecare platform are optimized for mobile phones and are freely available for hearing care professionals and patients at www.idainstitute.com/telecare.

For more information about the Tinnitus tools, see http://www.idainstitute.com/tinnitus

Visit the Ida Institute Booth (#1109) at AudiologyNOW! 2017 in Indianapolis on Thursday, April 6, 10:00AM – 6:00PM; and Friday, April 7, 9:00AM – 3:00 PM.

 

About the Ida Institute

The Ida Institute is an independent, non-profit organization based in Denmark.

Ida’s mission is to develop and integrate person-centered care in hearing rehabilitation. Together with hearing care professionals from around the world, the institute works to develop knowledge and strengthen the counseling process, enabling people to express their individual needs and preferences and take ownership of their hearing care.

Read more at www.idainstitute.com

 

 

Calling all future Trustees! Progress your career and drive forward the BSA

At our June AGM we will have two vacancies to join the BSA Council.

We are looking for two roles to be filled:

The role of being a trustee means making decisions that will affect the way the BSA is run; you will join us at an exciting time where we are working to achieve the strategy we have laid out for the next 2 years. The above two roles are key components of this strategy.

Candidates must be a member of BSA, and a BSA Proposer and a Seconder is required (who must be full members). A member may not propose or second more than one candidate. Thereafter there is a ballot by the membership.

For a full role description please sign in to the website and click here:  http://www.thebsa.org.uk/members-pages/council-members/

If you wish to apply, please complete a “Call for nominations form”, together with a brief statement from the nominee supporting their candidacy. The statement should be no more than 250 words, and accompanied by a recent head and shoulders photograph.

Call for nominations April 2017

 

Closing date is Sunday 21st May 2017 at 12am
Full inductions, training and support are provided for all of these roles. We would encourage you to contact us so we can fully outline the role and plans we have for the next 2 years. Please contact Laura Turton, Operations manager on laura@thebsa.org.uk or on 0118 9660622.

BSHAA – Win a free place at Congress 2017!

BSHAA – Win a free place at Congress 2017!

If you have new research or wish to share your best practice with your colleagues, enter our poster competition – and be in with the chance of winning a prize of free registration to the 2017 BSHAA Congress.

Posters should be on the Hear Well, Live Well theme and will be assessed for their originality, relevance and significance to BSHAA members.

For the first time, the 2017 BSHAA Congress will invite submissions from TWO categories:

  1. Students/HCAs
  2. Hearing aid dispensers, audiologists, researchers, manufacturers and other qualified hearing care professionals.

Prizes:

Category 1: Two free places for students AND two free places for HCAs
Category 2: One free place

The closing date for poster proposals is THURSDAY 23RD MARCH. You must provide a 200-word summary or abstract explaining the subject of your poster by this date.

Send us your abstract or summary via our online form HERE
Click HERE for full details on the competition rules and timescales

DeafKidz International World Hearing Day Event at House of Lords

On 1st March I attended a reception hosted by Lord Bruce of Bennachie in advance of the World Health Organisations (WHO) World Hearing Day 2017. The reception bought together stakeholders involved in hearing health globally and we heard speakers from DeadKidz International, the Royal College of physicians, the Hearing Conservation Council and the International Centre for Evidence in disability all discuss the great issue of hearing loss globally;  the impact on children and adults globally on communication, education, social and work life; the stigma attached to hearing loss; the lack of research into hearing loss and it’s impacts; the lack of money and resource going into supporting people with hearing loss and preventing it, and the extremely awful truth that children are often subjected to physical, mental, sexual abuse, neglect and exploitation within in some countries because they have hearing loss.

Lord Bates, DFID Minister said “No Deaf child would be left behind” and Tom Watson MP committed to support the work of DeafKidz International.

Photo courtesy of DeafKidz International

The WHO estimates that 60% of childhood hearing loss is preventable and the same message was repeated throughout the reception that ‘a little can go a long way’ in making a difference to people with hearing loss and preventing people from getting hearing loss. The numbers are staggering with an estimated 360 million people worldwide with hearing loss (WHO), which is set to increase with the ageing population and if nothing is done to prevent people from getting hearing loss; the clear majority of people with hearing loss live in low to middle income countries where there is little or no support for hearing loss or interventions to prevent hearing loss.

The real positive thing out of all of this, is that there really are a lot of dedicated individuals within the Government and from the charity and healthcare sector and we have started to have some important discussions. I have planned to meet with the Founder of DeafKidz International Steve Crump and The International Centre for Evidence in Disability (London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine), so that we can learn more about each other’s work and discuss how we might work together.

 

Gemma Twitchen

(Chair of Global Outreach Specialist Interest Group)

Launch of Global Outreach Specialist Interest Group

We had our Global Outreach Specialist Interest Group meeting on 1st March held at Aston University and over Skype. Today is our official ‘launch day’ as the Global Outreach Specialist Interest Group. We first got together at the end of last year, however have been in the background working on the webpage, World Hearing Day and BSA Conference, as well as trying to figure out how we could be most useful! Some of this is a work in progress and discussions are ongoing- we will update as we move forward. An important aspect is that we plan to work/collaborate with others and already we have developed a good working relationship with ENT UK Global Health who are a similar group to us.

As a few of our steering group members are working abroad in Malawi and Mauritius it will be rare that we will always be in the same room together. Sadly, we encountered connection issues and so, Helen and Rachna in the group were unable to get into the call. Last time it was a success, so we aren’t sure what happened, however we will try a different set up next time and hope for a better outcome. Wendy, Wahid and Riaz were all able to get together at Aston and below is a photo, so you can become a bit more familiar with us! Look out for an upload of all of our bio’s on the webpage soon…

 

Riaz, Wendy and Wahid post meeting!

 

We now have our Global Outreach page active which can be found here and we had discussions around what we would want to do with it next. We also are lucky to have a Global outreach page and have started to get volunteer stories and update with news. You will find information about World Hearing Day there also. We spoke about having more volunteer stories, information about volunteering opportunities, how frequently we would update on our work and ensuring we add success stories to the page. Wahid will be leading on this and will be working with the BSA to develop this further. We discussed our plans for World Hearing Day (WHD), which this year will be low key, but we already decided that we would work soon on plans for next year. We also finalised the plans for our slot at the BSA conference on 30th June and again, will be discussing over the next few meetings what we could do in 2018! As well as this we discussed looking to survey NGOs to see if there are activities that we could support them with; what we might fundraise/get grants for (we will be developing a list to see what is feasible for now and what we might look at in the future); what information could be useful for projects in other countries (could we get information interpreted for example in other languages); our next audacity article and lightening update as well as making further connections with other Stakeholders. We all have a lot to be working on we next meet.

 

Gemma Twitchen

(Chair of Global Outreach Specialist Interest Group)

Promoting global action on hearing loss: World hearing day

The need for global action on  hearing loss

It is estimated that over 5% of  the world’s population experience disabling hearing loss1 (World Health Organization, 2012; Olusanya et al,  2014). Studies suggest that if we include mild and unilateral hearing loss in  this estimation, over 20% of the world’s adult population would have some  degree of hearing loss (Stevens et al, 2011), making it the most common sensory  impairment among humans. Given our dependence on communication, the reduction  or loss of hearing has a significant impact on an individual’s life including  language development, cognition, education, employment and economic and  psychosocial well-being (Yoshinaga-Itano et al, 1998; Karchmer & Allen,  1999; Bess et al, 2011; Fellinger et al, 2012; Olusanya et al, 2014).

The fact that the prevalence and  impact of hearing loss can be mitigated through public health actions is well  known. Recent estimates suggest that nearly 60% of hearing loss among children  can be prevented through public health measures (World Health Organization,  2016a). For those who develop hearing loss, early diagnosis and suitable  interventions go a long way in improving outcomes. Despite this, only a few  countries, predominantly in the high-income group, have implemented strategic  plans to address hearing loss (World Health Organization, 2013). The growing  need for hearing care and lack of policies to address it poses a public health  challenge (Olusanya & Newton, 2007) requiring coordinated, comprehensive  action to drive policy formulation, seek financial resources, and enhance  hearing care accessibility (Olusanya et al, 2014).

Taking cognisance of these  facts, World Health Organization (WHO) organised a Stakeholders’ Consultation  on prevention of deafness and hearing loss at its headquarters in Geneva,  Switzerland in July 2016 (World Health Organization, 2016b). Professionals in  the field of ear and hearing, international professional associations,  nongovernmental organisations, civil society groups, academic institutions and  manufacturers of hearing devices came together to propose actions for promoting  global access to ear and hearing care. One of the key discussion points during  this meeting was the need for a coordinated global advocacy effort to prioritise  ear and hearing care.

Advocacy for hearing loss through  world hearing day

The first step in translating  knowledge and research into action is to raise awareness through evidence-based  advocacy (Friedlaender & Winston, 2004). In its programme for prevention  and control of deafness and hearing loss, WHO has highlighted evidence-based  advocacy as one of its programme objectives, along with development of  technical tools and implementation of national strategies for hearing care  (World Health Organization, 2016c). Over the past few years, WHO prevention and  control of deafness and hearing loss has focussed its advocacy efforts around  the World Hearing Day. World Hearing Day is observed annually on 3rd March with  the primary aim of raising awareness about different aspects of hearing loss  amongst all people, including policy makers, health care professionals,  developmental agencies, and civil society (World Health Organization, 2016d).

Since 2001, 3rd March was  observed as National Ear Care Day in China. In 2007, it was established as  International Ear Care Day during the First International Conference on  Prevention and Rehabilitation of Hearing Impairment (World Health Organization,  2015a). Interestingly, the rationale for selecting this date was that the  number 3.3 represents the shape of two ears. In 2015, the name was changed to  World Hearing Day, to focus more on the function rather than the organ (ear) of  hearing.

Each year, WHO identifies one  aspect of ear and hearing care, which should be highlighted as the advocacy  theme. Evidencebased key messages are developed to support the theme and  accompanied by a package of information products. Such a package may include  posters, banners, brochures, pamphlets, infographics, videos, or other  materials, often in multiple languages. These are used by groups,  organisations, and individuals around the world to plan activities ranging from  community-based actions to high-level advocacy. Awareness sessions, screening  programmes, provision of hearing devices, walks and runs to advocate for  hearing, strategic planning work-shops, and launches of national  strategies/programmes are some examples of such activities that have been  undertaken in the past (World Health Organization, 2014, 2015b, 2016e).

ISSN 1499-2027 print/ISSN  1708-8186 online _ 2017 British Society of  Audiology, International Society of Audiology, and Nordic Audiological Society
DOI:  10.1080/14992027.2017.1291264

WHO also organises activities at  its headquarters in Geneva including media coverage. Through Facebook, Twitter,  and Google Plus, a social media campaign is launched by WHO around the day to  take the messages on hearing loss to an ever-increasing number of people.

Over the past few years, many  organisations, civil society groups and opinion leaders have joined this social  media campaign. Last year saw the participation of a number of leading rock  bands and rock stars, who tweeted WHO’s messages on World Hearing Day and  promoted safe listening among their fans.

World hearing day themes

Since 2013, WHO has been  promoting World Hearing Day with a theme, to emphasise different aspects and  areas of ear and hearing. The themes over the past few years include as  follows:

 

 

 

 

On the World Hearing Day 2015, WHO raised alarm about the risk to hearing  posed by unsafe listening habits (World Health Organization, 2015c) and  launched the ”Make Listening Safe” initiative. This highlights the  potentially devastating risk posed by injudicious exposure in recreational  settings and promotes safe listening practices among youth through raised  awareness and development of safer technology for listening to music (World  Health Organization, 2015d). WHO is working on this initiative with numerous  partners and experts, with the vision that people of all ages should be able to  enjoy listening to music with full protection of their hearing.

2016 drew attention to the  impact of childhood hearing loss. A brochure, an infographic, posters and  banners outlined ways and means to integrate preventive and interventional  strategies for childhood hearing loss within health care programmes (World  Health Organization, 2016f).

In 2017, WHO plans to highlight  the economic impact of hearing loss and cost-effectiveness of interventions to  address this condition with the theme: ”Action for hearing loss: make a sound  investment” (World Health Organization, 2016d).

Join WHO’s advocacy efforts

Over the past few years, an  increasing number of partners and countries across the world have been observing  this day through advocacy and action for ear and hearing care. Anyone can  simply join this effort by undertaking hearing-related activities on 3rd March.  You can access information on the upcoming theme and past activities on the WHO  webpage and download WHO information products and materials free of cost (World  Health Organization, 2016d). You can also sign up on WHO’s website  (http://www.who.int/pbd/deafness/world-hearing-day/en/) to receive alerts and  information about the World Hearing Day activities. All actions undertaken at  any level within the community will serve to strengthen this effort to advocate  for hearing loss. Vincent Van Gogh said that ”Great things are done by small  things brought together”. We believe that as the number of people,  organisations, and countries participating in this initiative grow, so will its  impact on the global health agenda.

Note
1. Disabling hearing loss refers  to moderate or greater hearing loss in the worse hearing ear.

Acknowledgements of co-publication

The Editorial was originally  published in Ear  & Hearing, 2016  and is republished with the kind permission of the American Auditory Society.  For citation purposes, please use the original publication details: Chadha, S.  & Cieza A. 2017. Guest editorial: Promoting global action on hearing loss. World Hearing Day, Ear and Hear, 38, 133-134. DOI of original  article: http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/ AUD.0000000000000413.

Shelly Chadha and Alarcos Cieza
WHO Department for Management of  NCDs, Disability, Violence and Injury Prevention
World Health Organization
Geneva, Geneva, Switzerland

  E-mail: chadhas@who.int

References

Bess, F.H., Dodd-Murphy, H.  & Parker R.A. 2011. Children with mini-mal sensorineural hearing loss:  Prevalence, educational performance and functional status. Ear Hear, 31, 443-467.

  Fellinger, J., Holzinger, D.  & Pollard, R. 2012. Mental health of deaf people. Lancet, 379, 1037-1044.

  Friedlaender, E. & Winston,  F. 2004. Evidence based advocacy. Inj. Prev,  10, 324-326.

  Karchmer, M.A. & Allen, T.E.  1999. The functional assessment of deaf and hard of hearing students. Am Ann Deaf, 144, 68-77.

  Olusanya, B.O. & Newton,  V.E. 2007. Global burden of childhood hearing impairment and disease control  priorities for developing countries. Lancet, 369, 1314-1317.

  Olusanya, B.O., Neumann, K.J.  & Saunders, J.E. 2014. The global burden of disabling hearing impairment: A  call to action. Bull  World Health Organ,  92, 367-373.

  Stevens, G., Flaxman, S.,  Brunskill, E., et alet al. 2011. Global and regional hearing impairment  prevalence: An analysis of 42 studies in 29 countries. Eur J Public Health Adv, 176, 142-152.

  World Health Organization (WHO).  (2012). Prevention  of blindness and deafness: Estimates. Retrieved October 28, 2016: http://www.who.int/pbd/  deafness/estimates/en/.

  World Health Organization (WHO).  (2013). Multi-country  assessment of national capacity to provide hearing care. Retrieved October 28, 2016:  http://www.who.int/pbd/publications/WHOReportHearingCare_Englishweb.pdf.

  World Health Organization (WHO).  (2014). International  Ear Care Day: 3 March 2014: Ear care can avoid hearing loss. Retrieved October 28, 2016:  http://www.who.int/pbd/deafness/International_Ear_Care_Day_2014_ report.pdf.

  World Health Organization (WHO).  (2015a). International  Ear Care Day: 3 March. Retrieved October 28, 2016: http://www.who.int/pbd/deafness/news/IECD/en/.  146 S. Chadha & A. Cieza

  World Health Organization (WHO).  (2015b). International  ear care day 3 March 2015.  Retrieved October 28, 2016:  ttp://www.who.int/pbd/deafness/news/INTERNATIONAL_EAR_CARE_DAY_3_March_2015.pdf.

  World Health Organization (WHO).  (2015c). Hearing  loss due to recreational expo-sure to loud sounds. Retrieved October 28, 2016: http://apps.who.  int/iris/bitstream/10665/154589/1/9789241508513_eng.pdf.

  World Health Organization (WHO.  (2015d). Hearing  loss due to recreational expo-sure to loud sounds. Retrieved October 28, 2016:  http://www.who.int/pbd/deafness/news/safe_listening/en/.

  World Health Organization (WHO).  (2016a). Childhood  hearing loss: Strategies for prevention and care. World Health Organization.  Retrieved October 28, 2016:  http://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/10665/204632/1/9789241510325_eng.pdf/.

  World Health Organization (WHO).  (2016b). Prevention  of blindness and deafness: Recent events, 7 July 2016. Retrieved October 28, 2016:  http://www.who.int/pbd/deafness/en/.

  World Health Organization (WHO).  (2016c). Overview  of WHO’s program on prevention of deafness and hearing loss. Retrieved October 28, 2016:  http://www.who.int/pbd/deafness/activities/hearing_care_programme/en/.

  World Health Organization (WHO).  (2016d). World  Hearing Day: 3 March.  Retrieved October 28, 2016:  http://www.who.int/pbd/deafness/worldhearing-day/en/.

  World Health Organization (WHO).  (2016e). World  Hearing Day: 3 March 2016: Report of activities. Retrieved October 28, 2016:  http://www.who.int/pbd/deafness/world-hearing-day/WHD2016_Activities_Report_rev1.pdf.

  World Health Organization (WHO).  (2016f). 3 March  2016: World Hearing Day.  Retrieved October 28, 2016:  http://www.who.int/pbd/deafness/world-hearing-day/2016/en/.

  Yoshinaga-Itano, C., Sedey,  A.L., Coulter, D.K., Mehl, A.L. 1998. Language of early- and later-identified  children with hearing loss. Pediatrics,  102, 1161-1171.

 

Nepal Ear Hospital International Nepal Fellowship Green Pastures Hospital Newsletter

ENT surgeon, Mike Smith and his wife Fiona bring us up to date with news from Nepal

news letter Feb 2017

Case studies from Malawi

Alinafe was only a few months old when she first had malaria, which is a common cause of hearing loss in Malawi.  Her mother brought her to the hearing clinic when she was 2 years old, where she was identified with a hearing loss and glue ear.  The option of grommets was discussed, however this required a 6-hour journey to Blantyre for the surgery, which the family could not afford.  Alinafe did not return to the clinic for some time, due to the family being busy with subsistence farming.

At the age of 4, repeat testing showed a severe hearing loss in both ears.  Alinafe was fitted with second-hand pink Phonak hearing aids and enrolled in the Early Intervention (EI) programme we run for children under 6 who are newly diagnosed with a hearing loss.

Alinafe is shy and the staff work hard to help her to feel relaxed in the clinic.  She has been wearing her right hearing aid regularly and her mother reports that she benefits significantly from wearing it, however until recently Alinafe repeatedly took off the left aid.  On returning for a regular EI session, we checked the left hearing aid and discovered an intermittent fault.  Alinafe was fitted with a replacement aid which she appeared very happy with.  Regular attendance at the hearing clinic for support with developing listening skills and routine audiology check-ups helps us to identify and manage problems early.

 

 

 

Tiyamika, is 23 months old and first came to our clinic two months ago.  She has a severe-profound hearing loss in both ears.  Although she cannot speak yet, she is a very communicative little girl.  Her striking blue eyes suggest to us that she has Waadenburg’s syndrome, although this has not been officially diagnosed.

Two weeks ago Tiyamika was fitted with a second-hand Phonak hearing aid, and is already asking her mother to help her put it on in the morning.  She is now entering our Early Intervention programme, in addition to receiving communication support from a local rehabilitation centre.  Tiyamika is learning to imitate the speech sounds she hears, she is a delight to work with.

Most of our hearing aids and equipment are donated, and keeping appropriate levels of stock is a constant challenge.  One of our biggest issues at the moment is acquiring tamperproof battery drawers for hearing aid fittings for young children.  We create our own by filing down the hearing aids so that they are very difficult to open.  It works, but it’s not ideal!

 

 

Our clinic is linked to a small maternity hospital and in December we launched the first hospital-wide newborn hearing screening programme in Malawi.  The programme has been very well received, and we are now running a pilot project offering screening to newborns coming to the community vaccination clinics, and also for high-risk babies in the special care unit at the local government-run maternity hospital.  One of the biggest difficulties we have is following up babies who require repeat screening.  Often families have no phone and so many are lost to follow up.

For babies with no clear response from the screening test, we offer diagnostic auditory brainstem response (ABR) testing at the hearing clinic.  This testing comes with many challenges, the clinic is very hot and we have never yet completed an ABR without at least one power cut, but we work around these difficulties.

The African Bible College Hearing Clinic and Training Centre in Lilongwe is unusual in offering newborn hearing screening and diagnostic testing, hearing aid fittings to infants and an Early Intervention programme for young children with hearing loss to develop their listening skills.  Having all of these services available in the same centre provides an easily accessible service for children and their families.

 

 

BSA Global Outreach SIG and World Hearing Day

World Hearing Day 3rd March 2017 “Action For deafness: Make a sound investment”

March 3rd is World Hearing Day and The World Health Organization are drawing attention to the economic impact of hearing loss in their report “Action For deafness: Make a sound investment.” The report estimates that unaddressed hearing loss costs economy across the globe a whopping $750 billion annually. It reveals that unaddressed hearing loss puts significant costs on healthcare system, other than the cost of hearing aid devices and to society due to social isolation, communication difficulties and stigma globally. It also reveals that there is significant loss of productivity due to unemployment and retirement as well as the additional costs that are required in education to support children with hearing loss.

The report highlights that Action is cost effective such as interventions to prevent hearing loss and ensure that people are diagnoses early, for example, through screening of new born babies; school aged children and for people over 50 years for age related hearing loss. Saving can also be made by providing better rehabilitation to those that already have hearing aids to enable them get effective use from them and improving access to cochlear implants to help those with severe and profound hearing loss. To read the full report please click here. http://www.who.int/pbd/deafness/en/

Whilst in the UK we have good access to free audiology services in the UK and the option of private audiology services, the picture is quite the opposite in other countries across the globe with little or no access to audiology services at all. More needs to be done to raise awareness of hearing loss and the urgent need for audiology and ENT provision globally. We want to highlight and celebrate the great work of many volunteers working within audiology abroad to support projects that have been established to try to fill this void. As you will see, we’ve started to add volunteer stories to the Global Outreach page, but we know that there are lot more volunteers and NGO’s out there who are doing great things and making progress globally.

Do you want to fundraise for Global Outreach?

The BSA has a long history of global outreach work, including many of our members going out to other countries and delivering clinics. Our new Global Outreach SIG would like to support the training and implementation of Audiology clinics in other countries. A group of BSA members are looking to fundraise through a 24-hour race in September. Do you want to be part of this team? Could you fundraise in other ways? If you would like to find out more about this, the work of the BSA Global Outreach Group or would like to submit some volunteer stories, we’d love to hear from you. Contact laura@thebsa.org.uk

WHO seminar on Action for hearing loss: make a sound investment

Purpose:

This seminar will aim to raise awareness about the economic impact of hearing loss and highlight the cost effectiveness of interventions to address it.

It is proposed to share information about the estimates on cost of hearing loss; the cost effectiveness of a government-run hearing screening programme and the benefit of interventions for a person with hearing loss.

Mr Eddie Mukaaya will speak about his experiences in dealing with his daughter’s hearing loss.

 

 Chairperson: Dr Etienne Krug

·       The cost of hearing loss: Dr David McDaid, LSE

·       The cost-benefit of screening for hearing loss: a case study from Philippines: Dr Charlotte Chiong

·       Benefit of hearing care interventions: a personal perspective: Mr Eddie Mukaaya and Elaine Mukkaya, Uganda

 

Date and time: 3 March 12.30-2pm

Venue: Salle C, WHO headquarters

World Hearing Day 2017 Flyer

MEMBERSHIP CONSULTATION on: Surveillance Audiometry

The Professional Guidance Group are happy to announce that they have reviewed the Recommended Procedure on Industrial Audiometry and have changed the title and some of the contents to Surveillance Audiometry.

This procedure should be used to conduct hearing tests for the purpose of meeting the requirements of the Health & Safety Executive for those exposed to noise at work (HSE, 2005).

The document can be accessed here Surveillance Aud RP (Draft January 2017)

If you have any comments on any of these sections, or other areas of the document please send these to Laura Turton, Operations Manager on laura@thebsa.org.uk by Sunday 2nd April 2017

MEMBERSHIP CONSULTATION on: Recommended Procedure Pure-tone air-conduction and bone-conduction threshold audiometry with and without masking

The Professional Guidance Group are happy to announce that they have made some minor changes to The Recommended Procedure on Pure-tone air-conduction and bone-conduction threshold audiometry with and without masking.

They would like to draw your attention to the following – there are 3 amendments (all other areas of the document remain unchanged):

1. Section 7.3 – A line has been added to Bone-conduction audiometry without masking test stimuli p.12

2. Section 8.8 – Procedure for masking – Feedback was received that this section was generally difficult to understand in the 2011 version, particularly with regards to students and those who teach them. Therefore this sections has been modified to increase ease of use on page 18 – 19

3. Section 9 – Audiometric descriptors – The descriptor for mild hearing loss has been changed from 20-40dB to 21-40dB

The document can be accessed here Recommended Procedure Pure Tone Audiometry Jan 2017 V2

If you have any comments on any of these sections, or other areas of the document please send these to Laura Turton, Operations Manager on laura@thebsa.org.uk by Sunday 2nd April 2017

 

 

 

 

BIHIMA comes out in support of a national hearing screening programme

The British and Irish Hearing Instrument Manufacturers Association (BIHIMA) has announced its support for the campaign calling for state-funded hearing checks for everyone when they reach the age of 65.

The campaign is spearheaded by charities such as Action on Hearing Loss and the Ear Foundation[1], but support for the measure is not industry wide.  However, BIHIMA believes that any programme which promotes access to the life-changing technology developed by its members is not only desirable: it is vital.

Currently, the NHS assesses the hearing health of new babies through the Newborn Hearing Screening Programme, but the most recent review by the UK National Screening Committee did not support screening for hearing loss in adults.

BIHIMA believes this needs to change. As well as a national screening programme for the over 65s, the practise of regular hearing checks should be promoted as ‘the new normal’, in the same way as we have our eyes and teeth routinely checked. Despite the fact that hearing loss affects over 11 million adults and 45, 000 children in the UK (1 in 6 of the population), very few people ever get their hearing checked.[2]

A “new normal” would also reduce the cost of hearing problems wider society. The UK loses approximately £25 billion a year in productivity and unemployment as a result of poor hearing health. Action on Hearing Loss estimates that a hearing screening programme for people aged 65 would cost £255 million over 10 years, but the benefits across this period would amount to over £2 billion: a 10-year benefit-to-cost ratio of 8:1.

 

“These big numbers represent millions of individual lives – lives which could be transformed through better awareness about hearing health and through access to the innovative hearing technology developed by our members,” says BIHIMA chairman, Paul Surridge.

 

In the absence of a screening programme at present, BIHIMA would encourage individuals to make hearing checks part of their normal healthcare routine. Anyone can ask their GP or a national chain or an independent audiologist for a hearing test, or you can use one of the many online tests.

Visit www.bihima.com to find out more.

 

[1] https://www.actiononhearingloss.org.uk/supporting-you/policy-research-and-influencing/parliamentary-action-and-influencing/action-needed-on-hearing-loss.aspx

[2] https://www.england.nhs.uk/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/act-plan-hearing-loss-upd.pdf

 

The American Tinnitus Association (ATA) Launches a New Podcast for the Tinnitus Community

The first episode, A Journey in Tinnitus, is available now!

Listen to A Journey in Tinnitus – ATA’s first “Conversations in Tinnitus” podcast – that discusses the journey of a person with tinnitus from the moment they first hear the troublesome tinnitus sounds.

Dr. David Baguley, our first guest, touches on current research and hope for future advancement in the search for a cure for tinnitus. Dr. David Baguley is a world-renowned audiologist and professor of hearing science at the University of Nottingham in the United Kingdom and co-author of the recent book Living with Tinnitus.

Conversations in Tinnitus podcast is hosted by audiologists John A. Coverstone, AuD, Editor of ATA’s magazine Tinnitus Today, and Dean Flyger, AuD, a private practice audiologist in Texas. Each podcast focuses on current issues, research, and treatment methods for people living with tinnitus.

Share the News

Help us share the news of ATA‘s new podcast series by using the hashtag #ConversationsInTinnitus. Not a member of the ATA? Visit the ATA website and sign up today. Do your part in helping to support special educational tinnitus content like the podcast.

ATA.ORG

The American Tinnitus Association (ATA), headquartered in Portland, OR, has been a public supported 501(c)3 organization since 1971, with its Scientific Advisory Committee representing the top researchers in the field. The ATA fulfills its mission by:

1) Funding targeted research projects;

2) Providing education, hope and support for the tinnitus community;

3) Advocating for effective public policies focused on advancing science towards cures for tinnitus and hyperacusis; and

4) Collaborating with others to promote awareness, encourage prevention, and to ultimately silence tinnitus.

 

Visit the American Tinnitus Association’s Website: https://goo.gl/kVcf6W.

World Hearing Day 3rd March 2017 – how you can get involved

3 March is the World Hearing Day with the theme Action for hearing loss: make a sound investment

The materials for the day are available on the WHO webpage http://www.who.int/pbd/deafness/world-hearing-day/2017/en/ in English, French and Spanish. Translations in Arabic, Chinese and Russian will be uploaded shortly. Please feel free to use the materials and share them widely.

I am also attaching reporting templates in English, French and Spanish. You are welcome to use these and send us reports and pictures after the event, for inclusion in the WHO report on World Hearing Day, if you like.

The web-versions and print-ready versions will also be available for download from the Dropbox  World Hearing Day 2017

I also invite you to join our social media campaign on WHO Facebook, google account and Twitter using the hashtag #WorldHearingDay

Advancing Healthcare Awards – The Shortlist 2017

Outstanding allied health professionals and healthcare scientists from throughout the UK have been shortlisted in this year’s Advancing Healthcare awards. Chamberlain Dunn, the organisers of the awards, are delighted to report a record 160 entries were received from which the judges selected several in each category to go forward to the judging day, hosted on 14 February by the College of Occupational Therapists.

 

For details of the shortlist, click here AHA 17 – The Shortlist

 

This unique awards programme, which crosses boundaries and fosters partnership working, is open to allied health professionals, healthcare scientists and those who work alongside them in support roles. The awards will be presented on 31 March 2017 at the Chelsea Harbour Hotel in London.

 

New this year is the Guardian award for innovation in mental health services which attracted over 30 entries, many from art, music and drama therapists whose work is often overlooked. We are also recognising our Rising Stars, research champions, entrepreneurs and innovators.

 

The awards are sponsored by Health Education England, National Institute for Health Research, NHS Employers, Faculty of Public Health, Public Health England, Welsh Government, Scottish Government, Department of Health Northern Ireland, the Academy for Healthcare Science, Macmillan Cancer Support, the Society of Radiographers, Health Services Laboratories and The Guardian.

 

For more details go to www.AHPandHSawards.co.uk

 

Twitter @AHAwards

 

Organised by Chamberlain Dunn, these UK-wide Awards, now in their eleventh year, recognise and reward projects and professionals that lead innovative healthcare practice and make a real difference to patients’ lives in the healthcare science and allied health professions.

 

For further information contact Rachael Fisher on rachael@chamberdunn.co.uk tel: 020 8334 4500 Chamberlain Dunn, The Old Candlemakers, West St, Lewes, BN7 2NZ.

Consultation on BSA Practice Guidance

Donna Corrigan, the Chair of the Professional Guidance Group explains how the BSA practice guidance is created and reviewed.

The Professional Guidance Group (PGG) is responsible for all Recommended Procedures, Practice Guidance, Minimum Training Guidelines and Position Statements and the processes that these documents go through, including the consultation phase. There is a detailed document (Procedure for processing documents for recommended procedures and guidelines) about these processes in the Practice Guidance section of the website, but in summary the process is:

Ø  A document is reviewed or newly created by author(s) with relevant expertise in the subject, for example, a BSA Special Interest Group. A first complete draft is submitted to the PGG.

Ø  The PGG review the document, making recommendations about the content, formatting, language etc. to ensure consistency across BSA documentation.

Ø  The PGG and/or author(s) will invite the input of any relevant national/international experts (if not already done so).

Ø  The PGG submits the document to the BSA Council for review.

Ø  The draft document is made available for membership consultation via the BSA website and all relevant organisations (i.e. BAA, BSHAA, BAAP, RCGP, ENT UK, NCHA, BATOD etc.) are invited to participate. Lay person review also takes place by invitation of the PGG.

At this stage we welcome comments from all parties, no matter what their experience, seniority or professional background.

Ø  The consultation responses are collated and sent to the author(s) for consideration and action (if required). Members of the BSA are welcome to request a copy of the consultation record for their own interest and review.

At this stage all consultation feedback is considered but may not be implemented in the final document that is published. For example, this might be because there is a clear evidence base or a consensus of professional opinion to counter the comment.

Ø  The subsequent draft document is submitted to the PGG for second review.

Ø  Once the PGG are satisfied, it is submitted to the BSA Council for a second and final time.

Ø  The final document is published.

Setting up alerts for the International Journal of Audiology

Do you want to be alerted to new articles which may be of use to you? If so, consider setting up alerts. Click here for further information IJA ToC Instructions_December 2016

HCPC appoint two new lay members to Council

The Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) is pleased to announce the appointment of two new lay members to Council, Sue Gallone and Gavin Scott.

 Sue Gallone is a chartered management accountant and experienced executive director who has held a range of leadership roles including director of finance and resources at the Human Tissue Authority and Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority, and in a non-departmental public body of the Ministry of Justice.

 Gavin Scott lives and works in Scotland with current non-executive roles including membership of committees of the Scottish Prison Service and COSCA (Counselling & Psychotherapy in Scotland). He is a chartered accountant and has previously held non-executive roles at the University of Edinburgh and Strathclyde Pension Fund.

Elaine Buckley, Council Chair HCPC, commented: “I am delighted to welcome Sue and Gavin to the Council. Their diverse skills and experience in a variety of roles across the public, private and charity sectors will be a valuable contribution to the Council.”

Marc Seale, Chief Executive and Registrar, commented: “I welcome our newly appointed Council members Sue and Gavin and look forward to working with them to ensure that the HCPC maintains efficient regulatory processes, fulfils the highest standards of public protection and continues to be fit for purpose.”

Diary of work in Malawi 2 – Clinics from a landrover

Well, it’s been an eventful time here as I am settling in and learning more about life in Malawi.

 

Since I last wrote Pete (clinic manager), 3 trainees, Quinn (an OT student from the United States) and I have been on a 3-day outreach clinic to the village of Liwalazi near Lake Malawi.  The outreach was busy and complicated.  We had a number of children with foreign bodies in their ears, and it was a learning experience for the trainees as they saw patient after patient who had no eardrums due to chronic infections.  My otoscopy skills have improved rapidly since I started working here!  One little girl had bilateral atresia, we’d seen her previously and fitted her with a bone conductor hearing aid on a headband, she’d worn it for over 2 years but it had recently broken.  We replaced it, but the following day she was back.  She’d been to a community gathering and some children didn’t know what the aid was, so had grabbed it off her head and broken it.  Fortunately it was repairable.

 

My role was, as is generally the case on outreaches, to keep the hearing testing going smoothly, and to programme hearing aids using an Audioscan coupler.  I alternated my time between the audiotrailer (approx 40 degrees) and the back of the landrover (probably over 40 degrees).  Yes, wherever was the hottest place, that’s where I’d be.  I was really impressed by the Audioscan, which was so hot to the touch you could have burned yourself on it, yet it kept on working smoothly so I could programme the aids.  Sitting in the Landrover, with 3 computers running and hearing aids everywhere, it was pretty chaotic, but I managed.

Helen programming hearing aids in the back of the Landrover in Liwalazi


One evening I was chatting with Quinn and we were in definite agreement that the showers at our guest house were amazing.  Now, my shower had 2 taps, both of which issued tepid water.  I shared it with a dying cockroach.  The only thing that was amazing about that shower was that when you turned the tap, vaguely mud-coloured water trickled out.  On the second evening I shared my shower with 2 dying cockroaches, I didn’t even care.  On the final morning, there was no water.  Ah well, we knew it was too good to be true.

 

Driving home, the air conditioning unit in the audiotrailer (which hadn’t worked all trip, of course) fell off the wall.  We were expecting this so went to check on it when we were half way home.  That was when we discovered that the door to the audiotrailer wouldn’t open.  We managed to get the door open and do a temporary fix of the air conditioning unit with cable ties.  Then we couldn’t close the door.  More cable ties and another temporary fix.  There is a whole lot more to the role of an audiologist in Malawi than I ever considered in England!

 

Back at the clinic, our major news is that we have starting a pilot project for newborn hearing screening at the maternity clinic attached to our centre.  It’s only a small clinic, it won’t be huge numbers of babies, but it is still exciting, and daunting.  We’ve set up so that an assistant audiologist and trainee will do the screening – they’re excited – and then any referrals come to me – I’m daunted.  We were clear that we would not start the project unless we could manage any babies identified with a hearing loss.  We now have everything in place to screen and then do diagnostic testing, the only thing we don’t have are hearing aids with tamperproof drawers.  I will refuse to fit an infant with hearing aids that are unsafe; when the time comes, we will have to source some.

Newborn hearing screening gets underway


One concern I had about starting the screening programme was what will happen when I leave?  I am busy training Alinane to do ABR testing using UK protocols, but she won’t have the experience required to continue this without support when I leave next September.  Pete asked that we start anyway, saying it’s a lot easier to hand on a project that is already running successfully than to ask someone new to start it.  So, we have started, and we’ll see what happens as time goes on.  Even if it is not sustainable in the long-term, at least we will hope to have provided a quality service for some time by then.

 

Kamuzu and I recently fitted hearing aids for the 4-year-old I mentioned last time, who has a severe hearing loss.  She’d first come to the clinic 2 years ago, and the notes showed that she needed urgent follow-up then, but there were various additional notes, showing things like ‘mother has gone to the village to help with the harvest, will contact us on her return’.  Both parents came for the fitting, keen to learn how to do the best they can for their daughter.  Life here is tough.

Kamuzu on outreach 

The clinical work really challenges me to think about challenges that ordinarily can be referred on to other people.  I saw a delightfully engaging little 2 1/2-year-old recently, I’ll call him McLeod.  We confirmed what had previously been thought, McLeod has essentially no hearing.  He was very ill about a year ago and was treated with IV antibiotics.  Now we are left with lots of questions.  What caused his hearing loss?  Was he born deaf?  Was it the illness?  Was it the drug treatment?  The family don’t know what the illness was or what drugs he was given (this is not unusual).  It’s possible that he has a genetic susceptibility to aminoglycoside ototoxicity, and his mother is pregnant.  If his hearing loss was caused by side effects to the antibiotics, then his baby brother/sister may also be at risk.  But this is all supposition.  In the UK we would refer for genetic testing, and scans, and McLeod would have had been screened for hearing loss at birth, but that is not an option here.  McLeod’s family have limited education so we have to make sure that we give them a clear message that can’t be misinterpreted.  We want them to know that there is a risk that the baby may also go deaf if s/he is given antibiotics, but this risk has to be weighed against the fact that children get sick a lot here, and antibiotics are life-savers.  Unfortunately, poorly educated clinical officers routinely give out antibiotics for minor illnesses, and this is the potential danger we want to avoid.  If we get the message wrong then the family may put their baby at unnecessary risk of being either deaf or dead.  If we get it too far wrong they may give up on western medicine altogether and turn to ‘traditional’ medicine (witchdoctors).  This is a very real concern.  And what of McLeod?  Lovely, bright little McLeod, his future lies with learning sign language and attending one of the overcrowded and poorly resourced boarding schools for the Deaf.

 

Last week I started teaching a course to the trainees who are all studying for what we hope will become a BSc Audiology course (it’s awaiting final approval from the Higher Education Council).  My course is ‘Ear and Hearing Disorders’.  The course has been run before, it’s adapted from one given in the United States.  Not quite as adapted as I may have wished however; I went through one lecture yesterday, and ruthlessly culled the section on ‘frostbite of the ear’.  I’m reasonably safe doing that, don’t you think?  In sub-Saharan Africa…

Photos (all used with permission)

Do you want to be a BSA Trustee?

The role of being a trustee means making decisions that will affect the way the BSA is run; you will join us at an exciting time where we are working to achieve the strategy we have laid out for the next 4 years. Candidates must be a member of BSA, and a BSA Proposer and a Seconder is required (who must be full members). A member may not propose or second more than one candidate. Thereafter there is a ballot by the membership.

For a full role description please sign in to the website and click here:  http://www.thebsa.org.uk/members-pages/council-members/

If you wish to apply, please complete a “Call for nominations form”, together with a brief statement from the nominee supporting their candidacy. The statement should be no more than 250 words, and accompanied by a recent head and shoulders photograph.

call-for-nominations-dec-2016

Closing date is 6th January 2017 at 12am
Full inductions, training and support are provided for all of these roles. If you would like any further information please contact Laura Turton, Operations manager on laura@thebsa.org.uk or on 0118 9660622.

Toolkit for membership

All societies lose members over time – it’s a natural thing and unless we bring in new members we face the risk of losing influence. Why does the BSA need more members? With more members we are likely to get new and better ideas, more skills and more power to become a stronger, more influential Audiology organisation in the UK.

An elevator pitch is a short summary used to quickly and simply define a service or organisation and its proposition – it helps get the conversation started. Please feel free to use / alter the below in your efforts to market your society.

el-pitch

Call to action – how to join

Wherever possible, we need to inspire action – and make it easy for people to know what to do next.

We are trying to make it as easy as possible. If you would like some membership forms to distribute, please contact bsa@thebsa.org.uk / 0118 9660622.

Alternatively, you can direct people to the website:  http://www.thebsa.org.uk/contact/join-british-society-audiology/ as an online payment system is available.

We also have the following tools:

  1. Posters about the BSA, we can send these to you if requested
  2. A webinar on why you join:https://connect.sonova.com/p1c7hrj4ksh?launcher=false&fcsContent=true&pbMode=normal
  3. Membership profiles on why others have joined and what memberships means to them: http://www.thebsa.org.uk/contact/join-british-society-audiology/be-a-member-like-me/

 

We can all work together to help the BSA grow. Whether we convince members who have lapsed to re-join, or encourage new people – our next generation of audiology professionals, all of this will ensure our society better placed to achieve our vision.

Tinnitus Awareness Week 2017 – how you can get involved

Tinnitus Awareness Week (TAW) is an annual event which in 2017 is taking place from 6-12 February. Activity will be based around the campaign ‘Together for Tinnitus’ which is intended to generate discussion about tinnitus and raise awareness of the work being carried out and support provided by the British Tinnitus Association and other services across the UK, at hospitals and support groups etc.

 

We will be raising awareness amongst GPs about the condition and the treatment options available, so they feel confident to support patients who are experiencing this often distressing and debilitating condition. During the week, we will be launching our official ‘Tinnitus Guidance for GPs’ document which will provide the most up-to-date information on how people suffering with tinnitus can best be helped from diagnosis through to self-help management of the condition. In addition, we are promoting our new online resource which for people newly diagnosed with tinnitus www.takeontinnitus.co.uk. Take on Tinnitus is designed to give facts and ideas for things you can do to manage tinnitus and is an ideal resource for GPs to suggest to new tinnitus patients.

 

As a professional, you can help us raise awareness of tinnitus and services you provide, by having a prominent display in your department or in a place where you will get maximum attention. A display is great. A staffed stall is even better because it gives members of the public the opportunity to come along and talk but anything you can do to help support the week is always appreciated. We will provide you with information to give out including leaflets, posters and postcards. We can also provide balloons to draw attention to your stand and we’ll raise awareness of any events through our social media streams.

 

You can also help by doing any of the suggestions below in the run up to and during TAW:

 

·       If you use social media professionally or socially, share and use the hashtag #TAW2017

·       Request or download (www.tinnitus.org.uk) a ‘Together for Tinnitus’ postcard/flyer and show your support with a selfie on social media during the week

·       Download a Twibbon and use it as your profile image on social media.

·       Request a TAW poster or download one and display it locally so that more people know it’s Tinnitus Awareness Week

·       Let your GP know that the new Tinnitus Guidelines for GPs are available so they can become more informed

·       Join in with our Thunderclap on Friday 10th Feb – ‘We are standing together for tinnitus #TAW2017.’

·       Support us with a donation – we need to raise half a million pounds each year to continue our UK wide support. Donations can be made viawww.justgiving.com/BTA.

 

If you would like to get involved, please do get in touch with the BTA via emily@tinnitus.org.uk or call 0114 2509933 and help make Tinnitus Awareness Week 2017 the best one yet.

 

(All web based material will be available during January 2017)

Chair’s message – Winter 2016

All change on BSA council (with some familiar faces retained!)

At the Annual General Meeting of BSA in September 2016 several people who have worked hard to support the BSA over many years finished their terms of office and on behalf of the council and all the membership of BSA I want to extend a huge thank you to all of them.   They are:-

Huw Cooper as Chair but who returns as Immediate Past Chair

Kevin Munro who has now finished his term as Immediate Past Chair but who continues to represent BSA on the International Journal of Audiology ( IJA) council

Dave Furness who has served as Secretary to BSA for the past 6 years

Peter West who is stepping down as an IJA advisor in December at the end of his term

Michael Akeroyd,  Helen Pryce (who did an enormous amount of work on the National Commissioning Framework on behalf of BSA) and Chris Cartwright have stepped down as trustees.

I wish everyone all the very best in your future ventures.  Please keep in touch.

 Also at the AGM the new officers took up their posts and I thank those who have volunteered to steer the BSA through the next few years.  You can see our photos in glorious technicolour on the website.  Please contact any one of us if you have anything to say about the BSA and particularly if you wish to be involved in our mission in improving the lives of children and adults with balance and hearing problems.

The new officers are:-

Secretary      Gareth Smith

Treasurer     Barry Downes

Immediate past chair  Huw Cooper

Vice chair      Ted Killan

Chair            Liz Midgley

We also welcome 5 new trustees: Yvonne Noon, Imran Mulla, Sudhira Ratnayake, Carmel Capewell & Peyman Adjamian. If you want to learn more about your Council please click here http://www.thebsa.org.uk/people/

We are supported by Laura Turton the Operations Manager ,  Fitwise, the management company and the rest of the BSA council comprising 16 Trustees and there are also  10 advisors.

Together we will take the work of BSA forward by following our four year strategy and action plan and by reacting to issues as they arise.  This work is vital if we are to influence clinical practice and facilitate research to keep our members up to date in their continuing professional development and education.   We will be holding a Strategy away day in Nottingham on 3rd February 2017 to review our current action plan and formulate the next.  Watch this space for an update on our plans.

The BSA is a very important organisation to support by your membership.  There is no other organisation in the UK where all the different professionals involved in the wider field of audiology, both clinical practice and research can come together to share knowledge.  Our recommended procedures are used and quoted as best practice worldwide.  The benefits of being a member of the BSA are, receiving the International Journal of Audiology and the Audacity magazine;  cut price attendance at our Annual Conference  and other learning events; being able to join a special interest group to join with others interested in your particular specialism; clinicians and researchers being able to come together to influence each other’s work and practice and influencing world wide practice by the production of recommended procedures or joining the global outreach Special interest group.    Please could all members consider encouraging their colleagues to join the BSA so we have a strong society of committed and engaged members to take our work forward.

One of the benefits of being a member of the BSA is to receive the Audacity magazine which for several years has been edited by the team led by Martin O’Driscoll in Manchester.  They deserve a huge thank you for all their hard work in producing a very professional, informative and extremely interesting magazine.  They will be a hard act to follow but the mantle has been taken up by Jane Wild and her team in North Wales.  We thank Jane and her team for agreeing to edit the Audacity magazine and wish them every success.  If you feel  that you have something to share with members via Audacity please contact Jane.

Planning for our Annual Conference to be held in the Majestic Hotel in Harrogate on 29th and 30th June 2017 is well advanced.    The title is “Audiology and the Greater Good”.  The format will be the same as the very successful format trialled at last year’s conference with each special interest group having sessions, dedicated time for poster presentations and a large exhibition.   There will also be a celebration  (with bubbly!) as the BSA turns 50 later in the year.  Please give this conference your top priority; you won’t be disappointed!  Don’t forget the generous early bird rate which runs until the beginning of February.   I look forward to meeting you all there.

I hope that you all have a happy and successful 2017

 

With best wishes

 

Liz Midgley

 

Tinnitus and Hyperacusis Special Interest Group surveys – please help!

The BSA SIG on Tinnitus and Hyperacusis would be grateful if BSA members could take a few minutes to complete two short surveys.

The purpose of the first survey is to determine current level of knowledge about combination hearing aids for tinnitus amongst clinicians. By completing this survey you will contribute to the development of BSA recommended procedure for fitting of combination hearing aids for tinnitus.

https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/T3LFJC8

The purpose of the second survey is to understand from clinicians how hyperacusis practices in the UK operate. By completing this survey you will contribute to the development of BSA guidance on hyperacusis assessment and management. 

https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/DNP6NYF

Building the ultimate skillset for your future job through volunteering

Are you a BSA member? Do you want to progress your career? Have you considered how volunteering for the BSA on one of our Special Interest Groups, Committees of Council can help your career?

Volunteering encourages your self development and provides the opportunity to develop and build specialist skills for your future jobs.

If you want to become more involved in the BSA then please contact Laura Turton, Operations Manager to discuss what opportunities we currently have on laura@thebsa.org.uk

 

 

 

 

New strategy and change of name for manufacturers Association

The UK industry association representing hearing instrument manufacturer’s is announcing a change of name: formerly the British Hearing Aid Manufacturers Association, it has become the British and Irish Hearing Instrument Manufacturers Association (BIHIMA).

Recently appointed chairman, Paul Surridge, has been working with the board to establish a new strategy for the Association, which includes the change of name. The board has decided that the substitution of ‘Aid’ for ‘Instrument’ better reflects its commitment to changing public perceptions and to combatting the stigma attached to the term ‘hearing aids’.

The change of name also mirrors the fact that there have been some dramatic technological advancements in recent years which have had a major impact on the devices offered to consumers. This is reflected in the new strapline attributed to the association: The Voice of Hearing Technology.

The rebrand also brings the UK Association closer to its European counterpart, the European Hearing Instrument Manufacturers Association (EHIMA). 

The board, which is made up of the chief executives of the key member organisations (Starkey Hearing Technologies, Sivantos, Widex, Phonak, Oticon, GNReSound and Unitron), is looking forward to implementing the new strategic direction led by chairman, Paul Surridge.

Paul said: “I am looking forward to working with BIHIMA as we unfold a new strategy for the Association. Our aim is to work more closely with other bodies and charities in the hearing sector and importantly, through a dedicated campaign, help to raise consumer awareness of the importance of regular hearing tests and address the stigma associated with the wearing of hearing instruments.”

Paul brings significant experience to BIHIMA having served as Chief Executive of the Sight Care Group for the past 18 years, a business and product resource organisation for UK opticians, and as a Non-Executive Chairman of the national charity Vision Aid Overseas.

BIHIMA enters this new phase with a rebrand of its logo and a new website to follow by the end of the year.

 

 

bihima_logo_rgb_150dpi

UPDATED DOCUMENT – Ear Examination

The Professional Guidance Group are please to announce the updated version and publication of the Recommended Procedure for Ear Examination which can be accessed from our resources page under Recommended Procedures.

NEW DOCUMENT – Minimum Training Guidelines for Basic Audiometry & Tympanometry

The Professional Guidance Group are please to announce the publication of the Minimum Training Guidelines for Basic Audiometry & Tympanometry which can be accessed from our resources page under Recommended Procedures.

Diary of an work in Malawi 1 – Settling into life in Lilongwe

Helen Brough tells us about her current work

I check my bag before I go to work: sunglasses, water, more water, Bible, torch.  Not the usual set of supplies required for a day at an audiology clinic, but then, this audiology clinic is far from usual.

I arrived in Malawi 5 weeks ago, to volunteer for 12 months at the African Bible College Hearing Clinic and Training Centre in Lilongwe.  My role is to act as clinical lead and offer supervision to the one qualified audiologist, three assistant audiologists, and three trainees.

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Arriving in a village for an outreach clinic

The working day starts at 7.30am with a 30-minute session of Bible study and prayer.  Twice a week we join the college chapel services, on the other days the clinic staff meet separately.  I particularly like Fridays, when there is more of an emphasis on singing.  One of the clinic staff will start a song and everyone will join in, singing in complex Chichewa harmonies.  Well, everyone except me, my Chichewa hasn’t extended much beyond ‘zikomo’ (thank you) and ‘pepani’ (sorry).  Those two words and a big smile have served me well.  I’m hoping to start language classes soon.

We often see patients with hearing loss from preventable causes, such as measles, mumps and malaria.  We diagnosed a boy with severe bilateral hearing loss in my first week here.  He’d had meningitis at the age of 6 and his family had been advised by a ‘doctor’ to wait 10 years and his hearing would recover.  Now aged 16, the boy has poor speech and has lost all hope of an education.

Last week we diagnosed a very shy 4-year-old with severe bilateral hearing loss.  She’d had malaria when she was very young, and either that or the treatment for it appears to be the likely cause.  How do you advise a family about expectations for speech development for a 4-year-old in this situation?  I started my training after the onset of the NHSP, I’ve no experience of encountering children this age who’ve had essentially no access to sound for their whole life.  Fortunately Lois, an educational audiologist, has just arrived from Australia.  I gave her a rapid summary of the situation and asked her to talk it through with the family.  Lois is hoping to work with some of the clinic staff (who are also trained teachers) to develop some sort of Early Intervention programme here.

I recently saw a lively little girl aged 5, I’ll call her Chisomo, who was diagnosed with a severe hearing loss when she was very young.  We first met last year when she challenged all my skills to get accurate results from a hearing test.  She’s full of beans and loves coming to play with all the toys at the clinic.  I spent a lot of time chatting with her dad last year about the importance of her wearing her hearing aids consistently.  She is now asking for her aids every morning and is speaking both Chichewa and English very clearly.  It’s so good to see how well she’s doing.

We have to be very flexible in our ways of working here.  Mains electricity is rationed, which is a constant challenge.  The power shortages are getting so acute that a couple of weeks ago Pete, the clinic manager, organised for the hearing clinic to have our own mini-generator.  The entire staff team had a tutorial one morning on how to switch from one power supply to another.  If we get it wrong, we could blow up the generator – we gave him our full attention!

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Kamuzu fixes the generator plug

We do what we can when there is no electricity.   Tiwa was busy making earmoulds in the dark one day.  Our regular earmould-maker hadn’t turned up, and moulds needed to be made; she knew what to do, and there was just enough light in the room for her to manage.  I found Kamuzu also sitting in the dark, busy rewiring a plug for the generator extension lead.  “I’ve never done this before” he said, with a big grin “I hope it doesn’t explode”.

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Tiwa making earmoulds in the dark

Tomorrow we head north to some villages near Lake Malawi for a 3-day outreach.  One of the key elements of ABC is the free programme of primary ear care and audiology services we provide nationwide to patients who can’t travel to Lilongwe.  The clinic staff work in partnership with local community groups who identify the need and make the practical arrangements for us, we then travel in a specially adapted Landrover towing 2 sound-treated booths in an audiotrailer.  We bring everything with us that we need except water, and quite often set up our services in a field.  Last year I was working in the metal audiotrailer which was parked in the sun, it was so hot in there that the patients were asking if they could go outside for a while!  I love the outreaches, it is a chance to explore this beautiful country with a group of Malawians who are very keen to explain their culture to me, and to visit places that have never even heard of a beaten track.

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The Hark! (mobile hearing clinic)

Come back for regular updates from Helen over her 12 month adventure!

 

In memory of Dr Bethan Davies

 

dr-bethan-daviesThe BSA is sad to announce the death of Dr Bethan Davies.  Dr Davies was a long-time supporter of the Society, having been a member since 1974, and was honoured with life membership to the BSA for her commitment to Audiology.  Our thoughts are with Dr Davies’ family at this time.

Background

Bethan started getting memory loss a few years ago but had to leave the family home in Wilmslow in Apr 2014 due both to the gradual onset of dementia and her husband Val suffering a serious illness. At first she went to a Sunrise care home near Wilmslow for respite care which eventually became permanent care. In Nov 2014 the step-family agreed to moving Bethan to a Sunrise in Weybridge where her son John could see her and Ginny, her cat, twice a week. However, her memory deteriorated as she fell victim to this horrible illness.

Sadly, John was called by the care home at 4am on Fri 21st to say that she had suddenly suffered breathing difficulties during the night and passed away. The carers and the paramedics tried CPR to no avail. The cause of death has been recorded as Alzheimer’s.

Funeral details       

The funeral will be at Mortlake Crematorium, Kew Meadow Path, Townmead Road, Richmond TW9 4EN  at 14:00 on Wed 16 Nov.  http://www.mortlakecrematorium.org   The website has a directions page. There are ample parking facilities.  The reception will be at Newens ‘The Original Maids of Honour’, 288 Kew Road, Kew Gardens, Richmond TW9 3DU from about 15:15 on Wed 16 Nov.

Flowers and charity donations

We have decided to only have flowers from immediate family. If you wish to make a charitable donation (charities tbc), this will be possible via http://www.lodgebros.co.uk/ within the next few days, once set-up.

 

NEW DOCUMENT – Recommended Procedure for Rinne and Weber tuning fork tests

The Professional Guidance Group are please to announce the publication of the Recommended Procedure for Rinne and Weber tuning fork tests which can be accessed from our resources page under Recommended Procedures.

NEW DOCUMENT – Minimum Training Guidelines for Ear Examination

The Professional Guidance Group are please to announce the publication of the Minimum Training Guidelines for Ear Examination which can be accessed from our resources page under Minimum Training Guidelines.

Music and Hearing Aids Research – Participants Required

Music and Hearing Aids Research – Participants Required

 We are conducting research into the music listening behaviour of people (aged 18 and over) with hearing loss and who wear hearing aids for a minimum of one hour a day. As part of this study we have developed an online survey and are keen to recruit as many participants as possible.

To participate you will have

A BSL version of all the information and questions is available in the questionnaire

We will ask you about your

It should take about 30 minutes to complete and you will remain anonymous. If you leave your contact details, you will be entered into a prize draw to win one of three £75 cash prizes. Winners will be selected at random and notified in January 2017.

All the information we collect about you will be kept confidential and you will not be identifiable in any reports or publications.

Details of the project can be found on our website at http://www.musicandhearingaids.org

Flyer – recruitment-flyer

A short promotional video is available at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TH1eypULJEo

The survey is available at: http://tinyurl.com/musicandhearingaids

For further information contact Dr Alinka Greasley (University of Leeds,)

musicandhearingaids@leeds.ac.uk; or Mobile (Text only): 07917 721604.

 

 

Dr Alinka Greasley[1], Dr Harriet Crook[2] and Dr Jackie Salter1

This research has received ethical clearance from the University of Leeds Research Ethics Committee (PVAR 15-039) and is funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AH/M00368X/1)

[1] School of Music, University of Leeds

[2] Sheffield Teaching Hospitals, NHS foundation Trust

European Federation of Audiological Societies meeting in Cork

Dr Piers Dawes represented the BSA along with Jagit Sethi (representing the BAA) at the European Federation of Audiological Societies meeting in Cork, Ireland on September 15 and 16th. Representatives from the national societies of Germany, France, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Portugal, Czech Republic, Belgium, Norway, Spain, Ireland, Poland, Turkey and Israel were in attendance.

The meeting included a workshop on e-learning opportunities in audiology. The UK is a leader in e-audiology education, and Piers reported on e-audiology education programs that are available in the UK. EFAS is currently working to promote e-audiology education programs and facilitate international exchange, audiology training and models of best-practice in e-education in Europe.

Attendees were also given an update on planning for the 2017 EFAS annual general meeting, discussion of the next EFAS congress to be held on June 7-10 in Interlaken, Switzerland (http://www.efas2017.org). EFAS confirmed that they will be offering scholarships for young scientists to attend and present their work at the 2017 meeting (for details, see http://www.efas.ws/conferences/scholarship.htm).

The aim of EFAS is to promote cooperation, exchange of experience and knowledge of audiology within Europe, both as a scientific field and as a hearing health service offered to the public.

 

efas-2016

British Tinnitus Association Small Research Grants are now open

The BTA’s Small Research Project stream is now live and open for applications up to £5,000. Deadline for applications is 30 December 2016. More information via the link below.

http://tinnitus.org.uk/research-grants-1

BIG needs you! Recruitment for the Balance Interest Group

The British Society of Audiology (BSA) Balance Interest Group (BIG) Steering Committee wishes to recruit two additional members. We are looking for individuals with a good level of experience and expertise in the management of patients with balance disorders, whether clinical, educational, or third sector; but crucially also enthusiasm, fresh ideas and commitment to contribute to the work of the committee.

The committee meets for three 5 hour meetings each year, currently held in London, but there is also regular email correspondence and the requirement to carry out project work in between meetings. Committee work includes writing specialist Recommended Procedures, advising the BSA Council on balance issues, responding to balance related queries to the BSA, organising educational events, encouraging balance related research, and other projects aimed at improving the assessment and management of balance disorders.

The committee reflects the multidisciplinary nature of the BSA to include Clinical Scientists, Audiovestibular Physician, Physiotherapist and Director of a Charity. We will be looking to continue and possibly widen this multidisciplinary representation, and this will form part of our selection criteria.

Please submit both your CV and a brief statement (approx. 200-300 words) detailing your commitment to being a member of the committee and how you might contribute to the group. Please email these to Katy Morgan, Chair BSA Balance Interest Group at katy.morgan@wsh.nhs.uk by Fri 28th October.

Distinguished Lecture: Prof. C Petit, Institut Pasteur, Paris – Hearing mechanisms & genetic disorders

The University of Southampton is very pleased to announce a Distinguished Lecture given by Professor Christine Petit from Institut Pasteur, Paris, France on “Understanding hearing mechanisms in light of genetic disorders of this sensory system: from sound detection to auditory perception” .

Date:     Thursday 27/10/2016

Location:  University of Southampton Lanchester, Building 7 Room 3031

(See http://www.southampton.ac.uk/about/visit/highfield-campus.page for directions on getting to the University of Southampton and the campus map for location of the building).

Time:     17:30-19:00 (Teas and coffees are served from 17:30, the lecture begins at 18:00)

You are warmly welcome to join us, please register for the event here.

 

Abstract

Hearing is unique among the senses in its increasing contribution to communication during evolution, culminating in the development of language and music by humans. The molecular mechanisms underlying the development and functioning of the auditory system remained unknown until the start of the 1990s. We developed a genetic approach based on the identification of deafness genes in humans, and then carried out multidisciplinary studies, mostly in  genetically engineered mouse mutants, to obtain insight into the operation of this sensory system and the molecular networks underlying this functioning. This lecture will describe the progress we have made, on both aspects, towards understanding sound processing by the auditory sensory cells, the hair cells, and, in particular, the way in which their sensory antennae, the hair bundles, work to mediate the interplay between their various functions.  It will show how this research has, in parallel, revolutionized our knowledge of sensorineural deafness. Based on recent results, a new focus is emerging, highlighting the molecular mechanisms of auditory perception and revealing an overlooked side of inherited deafness that should lead to a reappraisal of therapies for hearing impairment. 

Christine Petit, MD, PhD, Professor at College de France (Chair of Genetics and Cellular Physiology), Professor at Institut Pasteur, Paris, France

 

Biography

Christine PETIT graduated in medicine (M.D. from Pierre et Marie Curie University – Paris VI) and in basic biological sciences, genetics and biochemistry, at Orsay University (Paris XI). She received her Ph.D at Institut Pasteur. During her research training, she studied microbial genetics with Gunnar Lindhal and François Jacob, cell genetics, human genetics with Jean Weissenbach and Pierre Tiollais, and immunology. In 2002, she was appointed Professor at College de France where she holds the chair of “Genetics and Cellular Physiology”. She is currently the head of the “Genetics and Physiology of Hearing laboratory” (Inserm Unit UMRS 1120) at Institut Pasteur.

Through her work on the structure of the human genome, Christine Petit elucidated the origin of sex inversion in humans, which results in XX males and XY females. She then focused on the sensory systems and attempted to understand the hereditary defects of olfaction and subsequently hearing (and vision, to a lesser extent). After identifying the first gene responsible for a total absence of smell in humans (the X-linked gene responsible for Kallmann syndrome), she developed experimental conditions for the study of hereditary deafness. This approach led to the identification of a large number of deafness-causing genes, most of which are implicated in early forms of deafness. She then elucidated the underlying mechanisms associated with these genes, and classified them into a number of physiopathological categories. She developed an interdisciplinary approach to decipher various aspects of the cellular and molecular basis of acoustic signal processing by the auditory system

Information taken from https://research.pasteur.fr/en/member/christine-petit/

Carl Verschuur MSc PhD

Professorial Fellow (Enterprise)

University of Southampton Auditory Implant Service, Building 19, Highfield, Southampton SO17 1BJ, AIS telephone: 02380 593522 Fax: 02380 599608, SMS: 07887790765

 

Calling all members! Help the BSA Grow – “Be one of the 300” project

Help us reach a further 300 new members by the end of this financial year (31st March 2017). All societies lose members over time – it’s a natural thing and unless we bring in new members we face the risk of losing influence. Why does the BSA need more members? With more members we are likely to get new and better ideas, more skills and more power to become a stronger, more influential Audiology organisation in the UK.

 

Last year we had an increase of 17% in our membership. Most people report joining the BSA because someone who they respect told them it would be good for their career. We need every member of the BSA to help engage your contacts and encourage them towards joining.

 

We are confident with your help we can do this. If every member persuaded just one person to join we would far exceed our goal.

 

Click here for an invitation we would like you to send to any contacts you have that might be interested in joining the BSA. bsa-membership-invitation

Incentives

 

For the referrer – for each successful, new full member you refer to the BSA you will get a £5 Amazon voucher – which will be collated and sent to you during April

 

For the new full member – For the first year, join the direct debit scheme and receive 12 months’ membership for the price of 10.

 

We can all work together to help the BSA grow. Whether we convince members who have lapsed to re-join, or encourage new people – our next generation of audiology professionals, all of this will ensure our society better placed to achieve our vision. 

 

Thank you for your support.

 

Withdrawal from NICE accreditation application

In recent years, the BSA Professional Guidance Group (PGG) has been working towards an application for NICE accreditation of our practice guidance development processes. Work was well advanced on the manual which describes in great detail how we produce practice guidance in order to meet the stringent NICE accreditation criteria. Quite unexpectedly, NICE recently announced closure of its accreditation programme, setting a very short deadline for submission of final applications. Regrettably, the very short notice of this decision by NICE prevents us from completing the remaining work on the manual and we have had no option but to withdraw from the accreditation application process.

New document!

The Professional Guidance Group and the Adult Rehabilitation Interest Group are delighted to announce the publication of Common Principles of Rehabilitation for Adults in Audiology Services which can be accessed from our resources page under Practice Guidance.

Updates from the British Tinnitus Association

The BTA have lots of exciting news

 

First edition of the Annual Tinnitus Research Review 

The BTA is delighted to announce the publication of the first edition of the new Annual Tinnitus Research Review. It can be viewed online at the BTA site www.tinnitus.org.uk/ATRR2016. The BTA is very keen to promote research into tinnitus, and funded over £576,000 of projects in 2015/16, equating to 53% of its annual spend. In the Tinnitus Research Review, the first of an annual series, the BTA have invited experts in tinnitus to review relevant research published in 2015, with the aim of summarising the highest quality and most relevant papers, giving both professional and lay readers an overview of the themes and developments in the field.
British Tinnitus Association creates a new resource to help you ‘Take on Tinnitus’

 

New online help for people new to tinnitus is now available at www.takeontinnitus.co.uk Take on Tinnitus is a new website aimed at people who have just begun to experience tinnitus and can be helpful to students and other professionals who don’t regularly see tinnitus patients. One in ten of UK adults have tinnitus and there are approximately 750,000 GP consultations about tinnitus in England each year.

The site is designed so it can be used on mobile phones, tablets or computers. After an initial taster session, there are seven learning modules covering: the fundamentals of tinnitus, hearing and tinnitus, benefits of using sound, the link between tinnitus and relaxation, sleep and tinnitus, the benefits of talking about it and living your life with tinnitus.

Each module takes just 10-15 minutes to complete and includes a range of interactive exercises, video clips and self-tests all designed to keep users engaged in their learning.

 

Easy Read Guides

The British Tinnitus Association (BTA) is pleased to announce the publication of the four BTA information leaflets in Easy Read format with the aid of a grant from Big Lottery Awards for All scheme.

 

This format of simple text and line drawings has been specially devised to help people with learning disabilities access the information they need to manage their tinnitus. Nearly 1 million people in England alone have a learning disability. The prevalence of hearing loss in people with learning disabilities is up to 40% and this often goes un- or mis-diagnosed. Hearing loss is the biggest causal factor in tinnitus. Up to 80% of people with tinnitus have a hearing loss.

 

The information leaflets in the series are:

 

These leaflets are available free of charge from the BTA and can be ordered by contacting them on 0114 250 9933 or info@tinnitus.org.uk

 

Marie and Jack Shapiro Prize Winner 2016 announced

 

The British Tinnitus Association (BTA) has presented the prestigious industry award, the Marie & Jack Shapiro Prize to a collaborative team of tinnitus clinicians and researchers. Magdalena Sereda, Derek Hoare, Richard Nicholson, Sandra Smith and Deb Hall have been awarded the prize for their paper ‘Consensus on hearing aid candidature and fitting for mild hearing loss, with and without tinnitus: Delphi review’.

New film documentary – In Pursuit of Silence

The film In Pursuit of Silence is about our relationship with silence, sound and the impact of noise on our lives. It looks and sounds beautiful and is interesting and engaging – as its selection for the prestigious Sheffield International Documentary Festival earlier this year proves. The film is a big wake up call to the public and politicians to take the subject of noise seriously. The film will be in cinemas all over the country from October 21st onwards. Full details are on the website http://inpursuitofsilence.co.uk, where there is also a trailer for the film.

Incoming Chair’s remarks September 2016

Incoming Chair’s remarks September 2016 – Building on the past; consolidating in the present; planning for the future

As I start my term of two years as Chair of BSA I would like to offer a huge vote of thanks to Huw Cooper as he steps down.  He has led the BSA through the last two years of change with determination, humour and wisdom.  We have transitioned from our office in Reading to being supported by the management company Fitwise.  We have appointed and learnt to work with our Operations Manager, Laura Turton.  We have restructured the Special Interest Groups and the Professional Guidance Group and moved the Annual Conference to the springtime.  I know that these projects and others have taken a lot of Huw’s time.

Huw will remain on the BSA council as the Immediate Past Chair and I for one am very grateful for that as I’m sure I’ll need to consult with him.  Kevin Munroe has been the Immediate Past Chair for two years and now steps aside.  Many thanks to Kevin too for his vision and foresight for BSA, particularly in suggesting the appointment of an Operations Manager.

I have been involved with the BSA as Vice Chair for the last two years.  There have been huge changes and there will now be a period of consolidation.  However these also continue to be times of change and modernisation and we will ensure that our strategic plan remains on course and updated.  The BSA council will be meeting in February to review our action plan and to plan the next four years.  From the moment I joined the BSA council I was struck by the number of very able and dedicated people involved with taking the work of the BSA forward.   I hope I can play my part with the rest of the team of trustees, advisors,  Laura and Fitwise in ensuring this organisation meets the needs of its members and of the wider audiology community.

Almost every week there is something new that we learn about that the BSA could have an input into and influence.  We can only do this if we spread the workload between all the trustees, advisors and members.  There are pressures on clinicians and researchers with more output expected from less people.  However all members of BSA still need educational opportunities in order to ensure that practice is evidence based and that the evidence base is there to inform practice!

Please if you would like to more involved talk to any council member of contact Laura or myself.

With best wishes

Liz Midgley

Consultation on Commissioner Guidance Documentation for Balance Services

Consultation on Commissioner Guidance Documentation for Balance Services

 

NHS England recently undertook an information gathering process on clinical audiology as part of their preparation for the Commissioning Framework document.

A multidisciplinary working group was asked to provide specific information on balance disorders deemed (by NHS England) to useful for commissioners, and within a very short timescale produced a document which included general information on vestibular disorders, a referral pathway (reflecting the diverse nature of existing services across the UK and allowing future service development), and proposed outcome measures and KPIs for vestibular services.

Although the information was not used in the published Commissioning Framework, which concentrated on Hearing Loss in Adults, the document is a useful draft which could be further refined to reflect the multidisciplinary nature of balance disorders.

The group is opening the document up for further consultation, with the aim of producing guidance for commissioners of balance services. The document can be found here:

http://www.thebsa.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/Commissioning-Framework-Audiology-Balance-Working-Group-Documentation-Version-1.pdf

 

Note: The NHS England consultation process was Audiology specific, and the authors fully acknowledge that further development is needed to reflect the diversity of balance services throughout the UK. Please note that the flow diagram not intended to present an “ideal service” or a single service model, but a general guide to existing referral routes which allows for future service developments.

Commenting on the Document:

Please use the form below to enter your comments and return it to Debbie.cane@manchester.ac.uk by 28/09/2016.

commissioner-guidance-documentation-for-balance-services-consultation-form-bsa-1

Comments will then be collated with those from the members of other professional bodies involved in the care of patients with dizziness. All feedback will be further discussed at a multidisciplinary meeting ‘The Balance Challenge’ (5/6th October).

As we anticipate receiving comments from a broad spectrum of clinicians it would be helpful if you would be as specific as possible so that we can incorporate your views into the final document. We would also be grateful if you could send us the document in Word format, as converting it to other formats makes it extremely difficult to combine feedback and the document is being produced by volunteers in their own time.

Many thanks in advance for your feedback which will be vital in optimizing pathways for patients with dizziness.

Debbie Cane (MSc CS Senior Clinical Scientist and Lecturer in Audiology)

 

Do you know about our organisational memberships?

Our organisation membership scheme aims to bring together individuals, organisations and companies to forge a successful future and influence opinions. Becoming an Organisation Supporter member will demonstrate your support for the sector and associate your brand
with best practice. Through being part of our open organisations of professionals with an interest in Audiology, hearing and balance science you can build relationships with influential senior professionals.

We have 4 levels of membership:

  1. Departmental / Small Company – in addition to the stated benefits all employees within the department receive the same benefits as individual members category.  The cost of this starts at £1,000.
  2. Corporate – designed for private or commercial organisations with an interest in Audiology. The cost of this is £500.
  3. Public Sector – designed for the public sector, non-profit organisations and academic institutions working for those with an interest in Audiology, hearing and balance science. The cost of this is £250.
  4. Local Community Group – designed for Lip-Reading Groups, Deaf Clubs and other small community groups.  To receive all benefits except those under ‘Profile Recognition’.  The cost of this is £125.

BSA Organisational Membership Leaflet

Organisational Membership

Hear the World Foundation welcomes Professor Kevin Munro to its Advisory Board

Audiology Professor Kevin J. Munro from the University of Manchester, a high-profile figure in the field of audiology, has been elected to the Advisory Board of the Hear the World Foundation effective August 2016. With his outstanding track record, he will add greatly to the foundation’s specialist expertise. For more information please click here htwf_kevin-munro_advisory-board_en_final

Update on hearing research funding in UK

The main funder of NHS research, the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), has funded three Biomedical Research Centres for hearing research: UCL, Nottingham and Manchester. Some £15m will be spent over the next five years on translational hearing research that will benefit adults and children with hearing loss and hearing-related disorders. For further details click here https://www.gov.uk/government/news/new-816-million-investment-in-health-research

 

Personalised medicine is transforming healthcare across the world

Personalised medicine is transforming healthcare across the world – a healthcare revolution driven by scientific and technical advances that is enhancing our ability to more precisely diagnose illnesses and target treatment of disease.

These advances are an intrinsic part of delivering the NHS Five Year Forward View and the NHS has the potential to become the first health service in the world to truly embrace personalised medicine across routine care.

NHS England published Improving Outcomes through Personalised Medicine at NHS Expo earlier this month. It sets out what we mean by personalised medicine, now and in the future, and the approach we will take, working with our partners, so that we can embrace new approaches, while ensuring that ethical, equality and economic implications are fully understood and addressed. These developments are being led within NHS England by Prof Sue Hill, Chief Scientific Officer for England.

For the document please see Improving Outcomes through Personalised Medicine

For the media release please see NHS England: Personalised Medicine

For a general overview please see the Radio 4 programme Personalised Medicine: Dose by Design

For queries please contact england.personalisedmedicine@nhs.net

Scientists have a key role to play in this new era of medicine and want you to be at the centre of the next phase of development of the strategy over the coming months.

 

Dr Alexandra B Milsom
Personalised Medicine Lead

Office of the Chief Scientific Officer

NHS England

 

Mobile: 07795 127014
www.england.nhs.uk

New recommended procedure published – Positioning Tests

The Balance Interest Group have updated the “Recommended Procedure for the Hallpike manoeuvre” and have a new document called “Recommended Procedure for Positioning tests”. To access the document please see the resources page and view under Recommended Procedures or click here positioning-tests-september-2016

BSA Awards Prizes – Thomas Simm Littler Prize and Ruth Spencer Prize

BSA Award Prizes

 Thomas Simm Littler Prize and Ruth Spencer Prize

Every year members of the BSA are able to nominate individuals for a number of prizes.  Nominations are now open for

  1. The Thomas Simm Littler Prize in recognition of an academic contribution to the discipline of audiology.
  2. The Ruth Spencer Prize in recognition of a notable contribution to clinical services by a registered practitioner.

Please send nominations for these prizes to Ted Killan as vice-Chair at e.killan@leeds.ac.uk with a brief outline as to why you are nominating your chosen person.  Please make your submission by the 30th November 2016 to be considered at the December meeting of the BSA Council.

 

Further vacancies on the BSA Council

We have up to 3 vacancies still on the BSA Council. Are you someone who wants to make a difference in Audiology? Do you want to:

  1. Use your skills and experience effectively to shape the BSA
  2. Make new contacts and improve your networks
  3. Work with new and interesting people from diverse background
  4. Learn about the management and strategy side of charities by taking on a leadership role
  5. The chance to keep learning through developing new skills
  6. Be offered new opportunities in your career
  7. Improve your career prospects
  8. Get involved with the Audiology community
  9. Make a difference to people with hearing and balance problems on a wide scale – give something back to your colleagues and profession
  10. Influence the organisation that you care about

The role of being a trustee means making decisions that will affect the way the BSA is run; you will join us at an exciting time where we are working to achieve the strategy we have laid out for the next 4 years. Candidates must be a member of BSA, and a BSA Proposer and a Seconder is required (who must be full members). A member may not propose or second more than one candidate. Thereafter there is a ballot by the membership.

For a full role description please sign in to the website and click here:  http://www.thebsa.org.uk/members-pages/council-members/

If you wish to apply, please complete a “Call for nominations form”, together with a brief statement from the nominee supporting their candidacy. The statement should be no more than 250 words, and accompanied by a recent head and shoulders photograph.

call-for-nominations-sept-2016
Full inductions, training and support are provided for all of these roles. If you would like any further information please contact Laura Turton, Operations manager on laura@thebsa.org.uk or on 0118 9660622.

Cognition in hearing surveys – please help!

The BSA SIG on Cognition in Hearing would be grateful if BSA members could take a few minutes to complete two short surveys. The purpose of these surveys is to find out what issues related to cognition in hearing are of interest/concern to clinicians. We will use your responses to guide the focus of BSA workshops and conferences, CPD events and discussion/position papers.

 

The first survey asks BSA members to rate their interest in the potential roles of cognition in audiology.

https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/NWC7T3F

 

The second survey focuses on the specific question of whether audiologists should carry out cognitive assessment:

https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/NJBRQGB

BSA AGM update

All members should be aware that we had our AGM on Monday 5th September and the minutes of these will be out within the next few weeks. It was attended by members who were also present at the PAIG and ARIG events plus some additional members who made the trip just for the AGM.

Please log on as a member and click here for the full presentation given by the Officers of the BSA http://www.thebsa.org.uk/members-pages/bsa-annual-general-meeting-monday-5th-september-2016/

Here are some photos from the event

         Dr Huw Cooper passes the Chair to Liz Midgley

BSA Annual Report & Accounts 2016

The Annual report and accounts are now available – please log on as a member and click through to this page: http://www.thebsa.org.uk/members-pages/bsa-annual-general-meeting-monday-5th-september-2016/

BAAP (British Association of Audiovestibular Physicians) Hallpike Prize 2016

BAAP (British Association of Audiovestibular Physicians) Hallpike Prize 2016

The prize is awarded annually for the best project of the past 24 month period (research, audit or review of subject) in the area of audiovestibular medicine. For more information and to apply please click: Hallpike Prize Application info 2016

 

 

SAVE THE DATE! The British Society of Audiology Annual Conference 2017 29th and 30th June 2017, The Majestic Hotel, Harrogate

AC2017 banner
BSA would like to announce a change in venue for the 2017 Conference, originally the conference was scheduled to take place in Doncaster and will now take place at the Majestic Hotel, Harrogate on Thursday 29th and Friday 30th June 2017.
This decision was made following the 2016 conference feedback, specifically focusing on comments regarding a lack of local accommodation and public transport links, we hope you agree that Harrogate offers these and much more.
Registration will be available from September 2016 and further information will be available on the BSA website shortly.

Update on the launch of the National Commissioning Framework

A newsletter on the National Commissioning Framework can be read here: Launch of commissioning Framework Newsletter 160719

NICE Consultation is now open on the draft Transition from children’s to adults’ services quality standard

NICE are pleased to announce that the draft Transition from children’s to adults’ services quality standard is now available on the NICE website for consultation. The BSA will be sending feedback in at the end of the consultation period and would invite members to send any comments in by Monday 15th July to laura@thebsa.org.uk  

 Draft transition from children’s to adults’ services: quality standard consultation

Following consultation a summary of the consultation comments, prepared by the NICE quality standards team, and the full set of consultation comments will be shared with the Quality Standards Advisory Committee (QSAC). 

 

Unique skills development opportunity for Hearing Care Assistants

The Vision and Hearing Sciences Department at Anglia Ruskin University has updated their unique short course for NHS Band 2/3 Healthcare Assistants and for Hearing Assistants working in private practice.

The flexible 9-month course approved by the British Society of Hearing Aid Audiologists starts in September 2016 and is delivered online with an on-campus final assessment. The course is designed to develop the Hearing Care Assistant’s confidence in dealing with patients and their hearing issues, and with colleagues for onward referral.

In addition, under the supervision of an RHAD, they will be able to carry out aftercare services and hearing aid repairs, safely perform otoscopy, take impressions and complete screening audiometry.

For more information visit our website or contact Degrees at Work on 01245 686707.

NEW DOCUMENT FOR CONSULTATION: Recommended Procedure for Rinne and Weber Tuning Forks

The Professional Guidance Group would like your input on this document which was last updated in 1987. Comments and feedback on this document are encouraged and welcomed from all members of the BSA. This document is open to consultation until 5pm Friday 26th August.

To access the document please click here Recommended Procedure Tuning Forks 2016

Please send any comments you have to Laura Turton (Operations Manager) on laura@thebsa.org.uk

New National Commissioning Framework for Hearing Loss Services launched

A new guide to help organisations responsible for planning and commissioning local hearing services for deaf people and those with diminishing hearing was launched by NHS England on the 19th July.

The BSA, as part of the Hearing Loss and Deafness Alliance advised and contributed to this work as a follow up to the Action Plan on Hearing Loss.

For further information please click here https://www.england.nhs.uk/2016/07/hearing-loss-services/

For access to the National Commissioning Framework please click here https://www.england.nhs.uk/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/HLCF.pdf

Do you know we have a new system for membership payment?

We have introduced a new paperless direct debit system called GoCardless, to make paying by direct debit more efficient and simpler. If you pay by direct debit we have not taken this on 1st June and we would kindly invite you to register with GoCardless to set up your direct debit payment for this years and future payments either using the link below or the one enclosed within the renewal letter.

A renewal letter has been sent by post with a membership checklist enclosed.  Please correct any spelling errors and fill any blanks, on the checklist, as it is important that we keep your records up to date especially a valid email address.

Register with GoCardless Now

Once you have completed the authorisation through the GoCardless system you will receive a notification email when the payments will be taken.

If you no longer wish to pay your fees by direct debit, please reply to bsa@thebsa.org.uk as soon as possible advising the alternative payment method you would like to use.

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact us at bsa@thebsa.org.uk or call 0118 9660622.

Update on NICE guidance

Following a consultation to which the BSA responded, NICE have now published the scope document for the development

of guidance on ‘Hearing loss (adult presentation): assessment and management’.

 

https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/GID-CGWAVE0833/documents/final-scope

 

Who the guideline is for:

 

The guideline with be released in May 2018. The BSA is registered as a stakeholder group and will provide further updates to the membership on progress and opportunities to contribute.

 

John Day, BSA Trustee

What is the BSA’s accreditation of short courses all about?

Do you know the BSA accredits course providers who train people in basic competencies of Audiology. The British Society of Audiology (BSA) has defined minimum training standards in Basic Audiometry & Tympanometry, Otoscopy & Impression Taking, Aural Care and in Industrial Audiometry. In each case, a BSA Certificate can be awarded to those who have successfully completed an accredited training course

Accreditation

BSA accreditation of short courses

To find out what it takes to gain accreditation please click here http://www.thebsa.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/How-to-apply-for-Accreditation-for-a-BSA-Certificate-Course.pdf

Current providers can be found here http://www.thebsa.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Accredited-Course-Providers.pdf

For further information please contact bsa@thebsa.org.uk

Sensory Systems, Technologies & Therapies Master of Research (MRes) Programme

MResSenSyT_flyer

www.ucl.ac.uk/sensyt

 

Adult Rehab competition – are you and your team going to win?

The Adult Rehabilitation Interest Group want to hear about your practice, your innovations and what is working well for you. They are running a simple poster competition which will be displayed at their “Complex Matters- going beyond the routine” learning event on the 5th September. All of the delegates there will judge the winner of two categories:

  1. The best innovation
  2. The idea most likely to change my clinical practice

Download the poster template here: Over to you

Come along on the day and be a delegate – to find out more click here http://www.thebsa.org.uk/events/event/adult-rehabilitation-interest-group-complex-matters-going-beyond-routine/

ARIG poster advert

Do you want to make a difference to the lives of people with hearing loss globally? New work on Global Outreach

2067 2023 2015

The BSA is working with ENT UK to grow our work on global outreach, which is how we support other organisations and promotes humanitarian audiology around the world. We want to know about your experience of this work so far in your career and whether you would like to become more involved? Please complete our online questionnaire.

https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/BSAGOSIG

 

What being a trustee can do for your career

In September, a number of our trustees come to the end of their terms of office and this means there is an exciting opportunity for you to join our team.

Full inductions, training and ongoing support are provided for all of these roles, through the BSA Operation Manager, Fitwise and a hard working body of trustees and advisors. If you would like any further information please contact Laura Turton, Operations manager on laura@thebsa.org.uk or on 0118 9660622.

  1. Use your skills and experience effectively to shape the BSA
  2. Make new contacts and improve your networks
  3. Work with new and interesting people from diverse background
  4. Learn about the management and strategy side of charities by taking on a leadership role
  5. The chance to keep learning through developing new skills
  6. Be offered new opportunities in your career
  7. Improve your career prospects
  8. Get involved with the Audiology community
  9. Make a difference to people with hearing and balance problems on a wide scale – give something back to your colleagues and profession
  10. Influence the organisation that you care about

We have 5 vacancies: three for trustees, one for Vice Chair and one for Secretary (both of whom are also trustees). Council members serve for a period of 3 years and can be re-elected for a further three years.   Council meets four times a year and in addition to these meetings, you will usually support an area of activity of the BSA.

Don’t leave it for someone else – come and work with us today

For more information please click here Trustee Vacancies from September 2016

To download the call for nominations form please click here Call-for-nominations

BSA AGM announced

The BSA is pleased to announce that it’s Annual General Meeting will take place on Monday 5th September 2016 at the Hugh Aston Building, De Montfort University, Leicester between 12.15pm and 1pm.

This is part of a joint BSA event with PAIG (Paediatric Audiology Interest Group) and ARIG (Adult Rehabilitation Interest Group) on complex cases.

More information on both the AGM and these events are due to be released soon, so watch this space!

University urges Scots to open their ears to hearing loss

The first university in Scotland to offer degree level education in audiology is urging Scots to open their ears and eyes to hearing loss.

Queen Margaret University (QMU), Edinburgh is helping to make people more aware about hearing loss with the launch of a new permanent display showcasing two centuries of hearing aid technology, including an early 20th century ear trumpet, spectacle aid and a 1970s conversation tube.

For more information please click here University urges Scots to open their ears to hearing loss

‘Right from the Start’ new campaign report launched

A new campaign report, called Right from the Start has recently been launched.

 

The report – which will be available to download from www.ndcs.org.uk/rightfromthestart  and also attached below – celebrates 10 years of new born hearing screening in England. As you may know, the National Deaf Children’s Society took a lead in campaigning for this programme to be introduced. It is clear that the programme has transformed the lives of many children born deaf but, 10 years on, there is still much to do to make sure that high quality early years support is in place following diagnosis.

The report calls on the Government, local authorities and health bodies to work together and make a commitment to ensure high quality support is in place as soon as a child is diagnosed as deaf. It makes five broad recommendations:

 

  1. Action is taken to protect and invest in paediatric audiology services and support them to become accredited under the Improving Quality in Physiological diagnostic Services (IQIPS) programme.
  2. The Government and local authorities continue to protect funding for specialist education services for deaf children.
  3. Local authorities review the provision of support with communication available to families in their area to ensure that the varying needs of families can be met at any one time.
  4. Local authorities ensure that radio aids are more readily available to parents of deaf children so that they can support their child’s spoken language and communication development.
  5. The Government should take action to ensure there is sufficient and effective provision across all local authorities for specialist childcare provision for deaf children, and that mainstream staff receive the training and advice they need to effectively include deaf children. This should include action to support parents with transport costs and to improve the listening environments of childcare settings.

Right from the Start campaign report FINAL

Chairman’s message: Spring 2016

All successful organisations must be prepared to change and keep moving forward. In my view, the ability to adapt and improve is the key to the evolution of a relevant and valuable society, which is how I hope the BSA is widely regarded.

 

There has certainly been plenty of change for our society over the last 12 months. The closure of the BSA’s Reading office last year and partnership with Fitwise has enable us to focus on the issues that really matter, and to turn our gaze outwards instead of inwards. One example of successful change has been the move and re-shaping of the annual conference which took place very successfully last week at the Ricoh arena, Coventry. This meeting was very well attended and all the feedback I have heard so far has been universally positive. It was a bold move to change the time of year for the annual conference, and I think we can now safely say that it has worked. The structure of the meeting, with sessions organised and chaired by each of the BSA’s special interest groups, worked very well indeed; this allowed those attending with specific interests in areas of audiology and hearing science to hear from the world experts in that field about the latest thinking and research. Following the conference, the organising committee will think through what worked well and what could be changed for next year’s conference, which has already be announced and will be in June 2017 at Doncaster. I am convinced that we have now demonstrated that the new, improved model for the structure of the conference, at a new time of year, is successful and will now go from strength to strength. A huge thank you to Mel Ferguson, Laura Turton and the rest of the organising committee for the enormous amount of work that went into making this event such a success.

 

Another change for the BSA has been the re-structuring of what was formerly the PPC (Professional Practice Committee). For many years (going back to the early 1970’s), the PPC has been a core and important part of the BSA’s activities and has worked with great patience and conscientiousness on the commissioning, development, writing and reviewing of recommended procedures, guidance and other important documents, for which the BSA is internationally known. The PPC has now been re-launched as the Professional Guidance Group (PGG). Responsibility for accreditation of training will be taken forward by the LEG (Learning Events Group), allowing the PGG to focus on the core workload of document processing. I would like to thank Graham Frost and the other members of the PPC, including Robert Rendell, Fiona Barker,   Wayne Ellis, Barry Downes, Jills Kurian and David Greenberg, for everything that you have done over the years for the PPC and the BSA. This work has required great persistence and dedication and is much appreciated. We wish the newly formed PGG led by Donna Corrigan the very best in taking forward this important workload.

 

The BSA’s advisory role has grown considerably in recent times, led by one of our trustees, John Day. John, and Helen Pryce, who represents the BSA on the Alliance on Deafness and Hearing loss, have been playing a key role in contributing to some rapidly evolving national policy making in relation to the commissioning framework for hearing loss. The BSA has a key part to play in this process, in collaboration with BAA and other friends. The rest of the Audiological community look to the BSA for sound, unbiased, sensible advice and information about any issues related to hearing loss, and John and Helen, along with other BSA members, have demonstrated how to do that well.

 

Finally, the BSA depends for its evolution and success on enthusiastic, motivated people from within our membership to take forward our strategic aims and ideas. In September (only 4 months away!) there will be vacancies for trustees and also for a Vice-Chair. The latter is a vitally important position to fill. If you want to help take the BSA forward to even greater success please consider taking the plunge and putting your name forward. If you’d like to find out more about what this entails and the commitment then please contact me: Huw.Cooper@uhb.nhs.uk- we look forward to hearing from you.

 

Best wishes to all

 

Huw Cooper

Chair

Very successful BSA Annual Conference 2016: Overview and photos

The British Society of Audiology Annual Conference, 25-27th April 2016: “Transforming Knowledge to Sound Practice”

CLICK HERE for more information and photos.

 

 

Professional Doctorate in Hearing Therapy

Aston  University are delighted to be offering a Professional Doctorate in Hearing Therapy

Doctor of Hearing Therapy

Applicants must hold at least an upper 2nd class Honours Degree in an audiology or related healthcare field from a UK University or the recognised equivalent from an overseas University.

Evidence of English Language proficiency is also required.  Acceptable alternatives to GCSE level English Language include the IGCSE ‘O’ Level (grade C), TOEFL paper based test (577), TOEFL computer based test (233), TOEFL internet based test (90-91) and IELTS 7.0.

International applicants will be considered on a case by case basis.  For more information follow this link:

http://www.aston.ac.uk/study/postgraduate/taught-programmes/life-health-sciences/doctor-of-hearing-therapy/

BSA research grant results in the first UK decision aid for adults with hearing loss

Fantastic news!

Do you want your patients to know more about hearing loss: hearing technology options? Research funded by the BSA has resulted in the publication of the first UK decision aid for adults with hearing loss.

To find out more please click here: http://optiongrid.org/option-grids/grid-landing/27

Or visit the exhibition at the BSA Conference to find out more

New membership benefit

Free entry to all BSA journal clubs for members

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As of this year we are bringing in a new benefit to your membership. You can attend any of our Journal Clubs for FREE. Watch this space for further information of the autumn ones planned on the management of Single Sided Deafness with Bone Anchored Hearing Aids in the coming weeks. Please keep checking our events pages for more details http://www.thebsa.org.uk/events/category/meetings/

Countdown has started for Trustee Elections

Opportunities to shape the BSA

In September, a number of our trustees come to the end of their terms of office and this means there is an exciting opportunity for you to join our team.

Full inductions, training and support are provided for all of these roles. If you would like any further information please contact Laura Turton, Operations manager on laura@thebsa.org.uk or on 0118 9660622.

Whether you have a wealth of experience or you are new in to the profession we would like to hear from you if you are motivated to build and empower professionals to improve the lives of people with hearing and balance problems.

We have 5 vacancies: three for trustees, one for Vice Chair and one for Secretary (both of whom are also trustees). Council members serve for a period of 3 years and can be re-elected for a further three years.   Council meets four times a year and in addition to these meetings, you will usually support an area of activity of the BSA.

Don’t leave it for someone else – come and work with us today

For more information please click here Trustee Vacancies from September 2016

To download the call for nominations form please click here Call-for-nominations

Obituary – Remembering Dr. Kevin Patrick Murphy

Obituary  – Dr. Kevin Patrick Murphy

Dr. Kevin Patrick Murphy who has died aged 95 will be remembered as a pioneering researcher and clinician, in the field of paediatric audiology.

Following five year’s war service in the RAF, Kevin Murphy was entitled to resume his university studies, and took a degree in Psychology. This was followed by a Master’s degree in criminology. He went on to hold a Medical Research Council fellowship in the Department for the Education of the Deaf at Manchester University, which involved visits to almost every school for the deaf in the country.  His PhD followed in 1956 with a thesis title of ‘A survey of the intelligence and abilities of 12 year old deaf children’.  Interestingly the examiners for this PhD were Professor Sir Alexander Ewing of the Department of Audiology and Education of the Deaf, and Sir Frederick Bartlett the eminent psychologist noted as the founder of modern cognitive psychology. Kevin still found time to cultivate friendships with colleagues and one such close personal and professional relationship was with Dr Pierre Gorman, later to be librarian at the RNID, and with whom Kevin became founder members of the Speech and Hearing Committee of the International Society for the Rehabilitation of the Disabled.

Meanwhile at the Royal Berkshire Hospital in Reading, a far sighted ENT consultant, Mr R Hunt-Williams had successfully submitted a research proposal to the Nuffield Foundation for a three year project to investigate hearing screening, and the use of auditory training with those children found to have hearing impairment. A grant of £7000 was allocated to the project. There was general scepticism at the possibility of conducting hearing tests with the very young, but Dr David Kendall from Manchester University visited Reading to demonstrate the newly developed techniques. A Teacher of the Deaf, Dan Ling was appointed to the project, and David Kendall agreed to re-locate to Reading and manage the project as a whole.  However no sooner had the building construction begun, than David Kendall had a change of heart and accepted a position in Vancouver, Canada.  The Reading project nearly stalled but after contacting three other Manchester University researchers including Kevin Murphy, the letter finally reached him, fresh back from a period working in Colombia. Kevin had provisionally accepted a lecturing position at Birkbeck College, but declined this and bravely accepted the far more risky appointment at Reading. The Royal Berkshire Hospital research project was back on track, and opened in 1958. Happily there proved to be much local support for the project in the Reading area, so that attempts to gain additional funding for the work gave rise to many fund raising  activities.

In due course the Nuffield Foundation grants expired, but fortunately the Foundation made new funds available, including support for enlarging the building at the Royal Berkshire Hospital. Space was however at a premium, so a local coach firm loaned a bus to be fitted out as a mobile audiometry testing unit, and staff were taught how to drive it.

The Berkshire Education Authority worked with the research project to develop the ‘Partially Deaf Units’ in some local schools, and this facility became so popular that families were re-locating to the Reading area just to get access to this provision for their children. Eventually however the end of the contracts for Nuffield funding again threatened the Reading project. Kevin Murphy typically not wanting to take ‘No’ for an answer, embarked on an appeal directly to the then Minister of Health Dr G Godber, later Sir George Godber, seeking his support for the work in Reading to continue.  Sir George proved to be a great supporter and designated Reading as one of the three National Centres of Excellence in Paediatric Audiology, and the Oxford Regional Health Board awarded the title of Regional Paediatric Audiology Research Unit.

The lack of commercially available equipment for paediatric audiology  proved a practical difficulty, and so the unit was equipped with a small engineering workshop where prototype items could be made. Johnny Johnson a technician was taken on and produced the first hand held warble tone generators, VRA equipment and auditory trainers. In due course the first baby cot designed to register head and neck movement in response to sound, was produced at Reading, and led to a collaboration with the Department of Medical Engineering at Brunel University. This development became the Linco Bennett Cradle, the first piece of audiology equipment specifically aimed at bringing down the age of diagnosis for deaf babies.  OAE’s had not yet been discovered, and ABR was not yet user-friendly as a means of neo-natal screening.

Much international interest was generated by the work at Reading, and this was reflected in the many invitations which arrived asking Kevin to lecture and collaborate world wide. This endorsement of the quality of research at Reading was remarkable;

“   …and in Great Britain Kevin Murphy was doing marvellous things in diagnosing deafness in young children. These, and other pioneers in the 1950-1960’s were functioning as isolated beacons surrounded by deep darkness.”

From Gunnar Liden’s keynote address to the 5th Elks International Symposium on the Hearing Impaired Infant,  1983.

His international work was recognised by the award of a Papal Medal, and led to him founding charities (The Peppard Trust), that ‘translated’ his clinical research into community based care settings.  In addition also he wrote ‘classical’ training chapters for Speech and Hearing degree courses, paediatrics and audiology.  He developed the Post Graduate training programs run by the ‘Unit’, and was supervisor to many Masters and PhD students from across the world who today lead their field.

It remains a good indication of his personality, that Kevin formed long lasting personal friendships with many of the people he met on foreign lecturing assignments, so that they became firm family friends as well as professional colleagues. One such lasting relationship was with Jon K. Shallop, PhD, Emeritus Professor, at the Mayo Clinic and College of Medicine and Ohio University.

“I first met Kevin in the USA when he gave a lecture at a national audiology professional meeting on testing the hearing of young babies, ages 1 to 12 months. I was very impressed by his knowledge and techniques. I invited him to come to Ohio University where I was a professor. He gave several lectures and demonstrations of his techniques. I was eligible for study leave and so Kevin agreed to let me come to work with him for 9 months at the Royal Berkshire Hospital in Reading. During this time of course I came to know his wonderful wife and family.”

A further research grant application at the Royal Berkshire Hospital in 1974 aimed to investigate the reading abilities of deaf children.  The appointed researcher was Dr John Bamford, and this project led on to another jointly managed with Dr John Bench, which produced the end result of the BKB sentence lists .

The use of VRA in a calibrated sound field room was for many years unique to Reading, with many sceptics around the UK. Happily Reading had a two room, ‘one way window’ test suite with a large observation facility.  By this means sceptics were won over to this technique especially with Kevin enjoying himself at the controls, and VRA became the established method of choice nationwide and elsewhere.

In 1982 Kevin and Roger Wills formed part of a small team tasked with investigating the facilities and practice of audiology and deaf education in Pakistan. This project was the result of a Pakistani request for help from the British government through the Overseas Development Administration, with upgrading the services provided in that country. Through a series of five, month long, visits over four years reports were made into the extent of the need and suggestions given to embark on a long term programme to improve practice throughout Pakistan. As a personal reflection, I found it remarkable that Kevin was so able to lead the team in that environment, resisting the cultural pitfalls, and regard the task as perfectly possible, though fraught with potential complex ‘stumbling blocks’.

A common thread in the memories of all those who knew Kevin is his irrepressible good humour. He was never far from laughing or making others laugh.  A constant source of stories, jokes and fun, especially with children.  He also had the great good fortune to be able to ‘connect’ with nervous parents and children, which naturally meant that his clinical work could appear very simple, though it was the result of vast experience and great skill. However, Kevin also had the ability to teach, debate and apply sharp insight into his academic roles. A very happy combination of attributes which will live in the recollections of those of us fortunate enough to have known him.

 

Roger Wills.

NHS England is calling on female healthcare scientists to apply for one of four unique places on its fellowship programme

 

​​NHS England is calling on female healthcare scientists to apply for one of four unique places on its fellowship programme

 

As part of a joint initiative between the Office of the Chief Scientific Officer and WISE – the campaign to promote women in science, technology and engineering –  the bespoke opportunity is available to mid-career healthcare scientists who wish to gain invaluable leadership experience and act as role models to inspire the next generation of female scientists.

The Fellowship will include a career development programme, which provides mentoring support, communication and leadership skills training over twelve months.

Professor Sue Hill OBE, our Chief Scientific Officer for England, said the initiative, which was launched on International Women’s Day was an opportunity to inspire the next generation of female science students and show the wide variety of science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) based careers within the NHS.

​Professor Sue Hill said:  “We have been working with WISE to launch this fellowship scheme and support the aim of getting one million more women working in the UK STEM workforce. The NHS Constitution makes it clear that a central principle of the health service is that it ‘operates at the limits of science’. It is particularly fitting to launch this new initiative on International Woman’s Day.”

 

Applications close on 15 April 2016 and the winners will be announced in June 2016.

 

The fellowship scheme is open to NHS healthcare scientists across England, full eligibility criteria and application forms are available on the WISE website​.

 

 

NICE guidance on adult onset hearing loss UPDATE – consultation on scope document underway, comments welcome – Deadline 26th April 2016

NICE guidance on adult onset hearing loss UPDATE – consultation on scope document underway, comments welcome – Deadline 26th April 2016

Further to a previous news posting on the website (2nd March) and by email to members, a consultation is now running relating to the scope of this important piece of work.
The work that is now underway is planned to complete in May 2018. Outcomes will be highly influential in shaping the delivery of adult Audiology across the UK countries. The BSA is encouraging members to register as stakeholders in order to keep up to date with progress and contribute. Note, this can be achieved by registering on behalf of your organisation (eg NHS trust or health board or university) rather than as an individual. You therefore need to be mindful that any contributions that you make may be labelled as coming from your organisation.
The BSA is also registered as an organisation but in this instance we feel that our collective impact will be greater if members contribute directly as indicated above. However, you are invited to copy your contributions to me in order that I can reinforce collective points. (john.day@wales.nhs.uk)
Register through the following link: http://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/indevelopment/gid-cgwave0833 See also http://www.nice.org.uk/Get-Involved/stakeholder-registration
Update: Once registered as a stakeholder you are now able to comment on the draft guideline scope, which can be found at: https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/indevelopment/gid-cgwave0833/consultation/html-content

The deadline for comments is 26 April 2016.
John Day, BSA Trustee

NICE recruiting professional and lay members for Hearing loss (adult onset) guideline committee

NICE are recruiting for professional and lay members for the NICE Hearing loss (adult onset) guideline committee.

This guidance will be pivotal to the future delivery of adult Audiology in the UK, so it is critical that this piece of work is well informed with input from knowledgeable professionals – BSA members are encouraged to apply. Note however, that as for all similar NICE committees, those applying are doing so as individuals rather than as representatives of any organisation.

Full information about the roles, including how to apply, can be found through the following link:

https://www.nice.org.uk/get-involved/join-a-committee/professional-member-hlgc

Positions particularly relevant to BSA members are:
1 x audiovestibular physician
2 x healthcare professionals with expertise in the assessment and management of hearing loss in adults
1 x ear, nose and throat surgeon
1 x scientist specialising in hearing research
The deadline for applications is 5pm, Tuesday 26 April 2016.

If you have any questions please get in touch with Natalie Pink, Project Manager at Natalie.Pink@rcplondon.ac.uk or 020 3075 1408.
I would also be happy to offer advice (john.day@wales.nhs.uk)

John Day
BSA Trustee (BSA representative on stakeholder group for this guidance)

Are you Fit for the Future?

Ida Institute Fit for the Future Resources

Fit for the Future-FINAL

IDA Research Committee Accepting Grant Applications – Deadline 31st March 2016

The Ida Institute has designated USD 30,000 for a maximum of USD 10,000 per grant for 2016.  Application for funding is available at www.idainstitute.com/about_ida/research_committee. Research should address one of two topic areas: Measuring outcomes of person-centered care or engaging communication partners in hearing rehabilitation. Projects must begin by September 1, 2016 and timeline for each project is one year. Submission deadline for applications is 5pm Central European Time, March 31, 2016.

The Research Committee members will review and select grant proposals for research projects designed to develop knowledge and understanding of the outcomes and implications of person-centered care for professionals and patients in hearing care.   The members of the new Research Committee reflect the strength and global scope of the Ida Network. They are: Committee Chair Louise Hickson, PhD, Professor of Audiology and Co-Director, Communication Disability Centre, The University of Queensland; Dr. Melanie Ferguson, Consultant Clinical Scientist (Audiology), Hon. Associate Professor and Research Lead, NIHR Nottingham Hearing Biomedical Research Unit in Hearing; Sophia Kramer, PhD, University Research Chair, Auditory Functioning and Participation, Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, Section Ear & Hearing EMGO Institute for Health and Care Research; Joseph Montano, EdD, Chief of Audiology and Speech Language Pathology, New York Presbyterian Hospital-Weill Cornell Medical Center; and Elisabet Thorén, PhD, Project Manager and Research Audiologist, Eriksholm Research Centre.   Following selection of the grant recipients, Professor Hickson, Dr. Ferguson, Professor Kramer, Dr. Thorén and Dr. Montano will provide feedback and advice regarding the research proposals. Click here to learn more about the Research Committee and application process.

 

TWO NEW DOCUMENTS FOR CONSULTATION: Minimum Training Guidelines for Basic Audiometry and Tympanometry & Ear Examinations

The Documents & Guidance Group would like your input, they have recently updated two Minimum Training Guidance Documents, one on Basic Audiometry and Tympanometry for non-diagnostic hearing assessments by professionals who are not qualified Audiologists & on Ear Examinations.

Comments and feedback on this document are encouraged and welcomed from all members of the BSA.

This document is now open for consultation.

To access this document please click here

Minimum Training Guidelines for Basic Audiometry and Tympanometry 2016

Minimum Training Guidelines for Ear Examinations 2016

Please send any comments you have to Laura Turton (BSA Operations Manager) at laura@thebsa.org.uk by Friday 15th April 2016

Medical Device Alert: All ZeniPower mercury-free hearing aid batteries – low risk of batteries exploding during use or if depleted

 The British Society of Audiology have been informed that an issue has been identified by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).

There is a low risk of hearing aid batteries, manufactured by ZeniPower, to explode. There has not been any reports of injury as a result of this, however there is a medical device alert MDA-2016-003 final as a precautionary measure. There is more information in the attached alert.

I would be grateful if you could please pass the above information to relevant staff to raise awareness of exploding hearing aid batteries and  circulate the alert to warn patients to stop using the batteries with specific best before dates as indicated in the alert.

https://www.gov.uk/drug-device-alerts/all-zenipower-mercury-free-hearing-aid-batteries-low-risk-of-batteries-exploding-during-use-or-if-depleted

 

 

 

 

NEW DOCUMENT: Now open for consultation – Practice Guidance on Common Principles of Rehabilitation for Adults in Audiology Services

The Adult Rehabilitation Interest Group would like your input, they have recently updated the “Common principles of rehabilitation for adults with hearing- and/or balance-related problems in routine audiology services” and have renamed it “Common Principles of Rehabilitation for Adults in Audiology Services “. This Practice Guidance presents principles on effective rehabilitation in adults. Comments and feedback on this document are encouraged and welcomed from all members of the BSA.

This document is now open for consultation.

To access this document please click here BSA Adult Rehabilitation Guidance Draft

Please send any comments you have to Laura Turton (BSA Operations Manager) at laura@thebsa.org.uk by Friday 8th April 2016

NICE developing guidance on adult onset hearing loss – your comments welcome

NICE is developing key UK guidance on the assessment and management of adult onset hearing loss. This is a long awaited piece of work that is about to commence by engagement with stakeholders and is planned to complete in May 2018.  Outcomes will be highly influential in shaping the  delivery of adult rehabilitative Audiology across the UK countries. The BSA is encouraging members to register as stakeholders in order to keep up to date with progress and contribute.  Note this can be achieved by registering on behalf of your organisation (eg NHS trust or health board or university) rather than as an individual. You therefore need to be mindful that any contributions that you make may be labelled as coming from your organisation.

If you wish to comment on consultation documents you would need to be registered before each consultation closes. The BSA is also registered as an organisation but in this instance we feel that our collective impact will be greater if members contribute directly as indicated above. However, you are invited to copy your contributions to me in order that I can reinforce collective points. (john.day@wales.nhs.uk)

Register through the following link:  http://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/indevelopment/gid-cgwave0833

See also http://www.nice.org.uk/Get-Involved/stakeholder-registration

CLICK HERE for copy of the draft scope for the project is attached for information. I understand that there will be a consultation exercise on the scope document from 29 March to 26 Apr 2016.

John Day, BSA Trustee

 

Important information on Commissioning Framework

The BSA are currently working with other members of the Hearing Alliance to advise NHS England on providing a commissioning framework which has come from the work done on the Action Plan for Hearing Loss. The aim of this work is to provide commissioners with a structure to consider resourcing their hearing and balance services.

This is a vital piece of work as it will influence how hearing and balance services will work for patients. So please have your say.

A number of frameworks (containing information on pathways, outcomes and key performance indicators) are being developed:

We are also trying to provide examples of new innovations within pathways in Audiology which are examples of good practice. All of this work is being coordinated by the Hearing Alliance with sub-committees on each of the above from the NDCS, the BAA and the British Tinnitus Association with the BSA’s Special Interest Group and the BSA Council support.

Student scholarships to the 33rd World Congress of Audiology, 18-21 Sept 2016, Vancouver

Dear ISA members and Affiliate Societies,  

The International Society of Audiology (ISA) is pleased to offer a small number of student scholarships to the 33rd World Congress of Audiology, to be held from  September 18 to 21, 2016 in Vancouver.  The scholarships, in the amount of U.S. $1,500 are sponsored by the ISA. Applicants must meet the following eligibility requirements: 1.     A full time student in an institution of higher learning taking courses in audiology and preferably working towards a degree in audiology or hearing science. Graduates who will be completing their degree in 2016 may also apply; 2.     A current Student Member of the International Society of Audiology; 3.     The paper is accepted by the WCA2016 for presentation. If the student has more than one paper accepted by the WCA2016, s/he should submit only one paper for consideration; and 4.     The research should represent the applicants’ own work and have not been presented or published elsewhere. More details about the scholarship and the application form are available in this download. Please encourage ISA student members to apply. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Thank you.  

Prof. Lena Wong ISA Executive Board member Email: llnwong@hku.hk

UCLU Sign Language Society in UCL need your help

The UCLU Sign Language Society has recently been informed that grant requests amounting to £2,852 which were given in the previous year have been rejected. We have been receiving these grants in the past year and the lack of funding this year has placed us in a difficult position. As such, we hope that you could help us out by spreading the words to anyone who may be interested in giving donation of any amount to help us cover the costs of running our classes.

The donation page can be found here

For further information please contact uclsignlanguage@ucl.ac.uk

 

LIGHTNING UPDATE: BSA Annual Conference 25-27th April 2016

Quick here for LIGHTNING UPDATE: BSA Annual Conference 25-27th April 2016 by Dr Mel Ferguson

NEW DOCUMENT: Now open for consultation – Recommended Procedure for Cortical Evoked Response Audiometry

The Electrophysiology Special Interest Group would like your input. One of the most useful auditory electrophysiological methods for adults in the UK is Cortical Evoked Response Audiometry. This Recommended Procedure presents guidance on the clinical application of this technique for use with adults and older children. There is also a brief summary of the use of the response in supra-threshold testing in infants. Comments and feedback on this document are encouraged and welcomed from all members of the BSA.

This document is now open for consultation.

To access this document please CLICK HERE

Please send any comments you have to Laura Turton (BSA Operations Manager) at laura@thebsa.org.uk by Friday 5th February 2016

Workshop invitation 22/02/2016 – Hellish Decisions for Audiology and Hearing Healthcare Services

This is a personal invitation from Professor Adrian Davis to attend a workshop on February 22nd 2016 to find solutions to the pressing problems audiology and hearing healthcare services currently face:
· Unwarranted variations in access, quality, cost and outcomes of care
· Potential patient harm – even when the quality of care we deliver is high
· Waste – anything that does not add value to our patients or diverts resource from patients who are in greater need
· Inequity of provision
· Failure to prevent preventable hearing loss

We need to find and implement innovative solutions to these issues in a climate where there is no more money. And the systematic search for and implementation of innovation in the delivery of hearing healthcare services is a skill all audiologists must master and develop: innovation is not a fad but a discipline we must all engage with.

The workshop will give you the opportunity to develop skills in delivering value based and population healthcare solutions with your colleagues to future proof our hearing healthcare services.
There are only 20 places available at the workshop which will be held in Nottingham in partnership with the Ear Foundation. To book your place, contact Lesley.burn@lesleyburnconsultancy.co.uk or telephone 07831 114445.

We would be very grateful if you would forward this invitation around your audiology networks and to colleagues who you think would be interested.

With many thanks and best wishes
Lesley Burn on behalf of Professor Adrian Davis

CLARIFYING AUDIOMETRIC DESCRIPTORS: THEIR VALUE AND LIMITATIONS

While audiometric descriptors may provide a useful summary of an individual’s hearing thresholds, they should not be used as the sole determinant for the provision of hearing support. The ability to detect pure tones using earphones in a quiet environment is not in itself a reliable indicator of hearing disability and audiometric descriptors alone should not be used as the measure of difficulty experienced with communication in background noise, the primary complain to individuals with hearing loss.

The BSA recommended procedures document ‘Pure Tone Air and Bone Conduction Threshold Audiometry with and without Masking’ has been amended to ensure that the value and limitations of audiometric descriptors are clearly understood.

 CLICK HERE to access the document.

 

GENERATE’s Research Agenda for ENT, Hearing and Balance Care

GENERATE, together with doctors and researchers in ENT, Hearing and Balance have worked closely with patients and families to develop an agenda that will guide research in the field for the next 10 years

Research priorities include improving the patient’s journey when suffering from ENT problems, such as allergies, and problems of the sinuses and voice. Patients felt it is important that there is research into self-management, in particular for those suffering from dizziness. There is a need to improve the benefit of hearing aids and develop and test new treatments for hearing loss as well as for loss of other senses such as balance and smell.

For more information click here GENERATE Research Agenda for ENT Hearing and Balance 2015

 

NEW DOCUMENT: Now open for consultation – Recommended Procedure for Positioning tests

The Balance Interest Group have updated the “Recommended Procedure for the Hallpike Manoeuvre” and have a new document called “Recommended Procedure for Positioning Tests” which is open for consultation.

To access this document please CLICK HERE

Please send any comments you have to Laura Turton (BSA Operations Manager) at laura@thebsa.org.uk by 8th January 2016

DEADLINE EXTENDED: Applied & Clinical Research abstract submission for the BSA Annual Conference NEW DATE: 8 JAN 2016

The deadline for the Applied and Clinical Research abstract submission for the BSA Annual Conference has been extended

For full instructions and to submit your abstract visit www.eventsforce.net/bsa2016 and click on the “Abstracts” tab.

 

 

 

 

 

 

MomENTum Mapping UK Research Activity in ENT, Hearing & Balance

ENT UK is delighted to announce the creation of a database which will showcase current ENT, Hearing and Balance research in the UK.

The database – MomENTum, will be accessible and located on the ENT UK website.

It will be a valuable resource for researchers, both experienced and those new to the field, and for research funders wishing to look for expertise or collaborators.

As a BSA Member and researcher we would like to invite you to be part of this database.

The survey below takes a few minutes to complete and asks general questions about your project/s, funder/s and research collaborators.

We appreciate your time in completing this brief survey.                                                                                 ​

Please click here to complete the survey.

If you have any questions or comments please contact Dr Allison Reid

Phone: 0203 1089 330 or email: research@entuk.org

GET INVOLVED: Proposed audit of provision of hearing aids for mild/moderate hearing losses

As an extension to an existing project hosted at the University of Manchester, Prof Kevin Munro and Dr Michael Stone are proposing to carry out an audit of hearing aid dispensing across a large number of NHS patients first fitted in 2016. We propose to mine information from Auditbase to include data about the hearing loss, patient demographic (age, gender, profession) and tie this in with the data logged routinely by modern digital hearings aids. The aims are to identify factors that predict successful and quantifiable outcomes, as well as possibly identify factors that support lack of intervention. This of high relevance to future service delivery within the NHS.

For more information CLICK HERE

Interested?    Contact either Prof Kevin Munro (kevin.j.munro@manchester.ac.uk) or Dr Michael Stone (michael.stone@manchester.ac.uk) of the Audiology and Deafness Research Group, University of Manchester.

 

OPPORTUNITY: NICE is seeking an early guideline committee member

The National Clinical Guideline Centre is seeking to recruit an early guideline committee member for the hearing loss guideline (adult onset) that we are developing on behalf of NICE. We are particularly seeking someone from the following specialties (or with relevant experience):

All information about the role can be found at: http://www.nice.org.uk/get-involved/join-a-committee/member-hearing-loss-guideline-committee.

The closing date for applications is Friday 4 December, 5pm. We would very much appreciate any help you can offer in publicising this message amongst your members, as we have had a low response rate to date.

Professor Kevin J Munro represents BSA: Stop cuts to adult hearing aid provision

Professor Kevin J Munro, immediate past-chair of BSA, represented BSA at the Healthy Staffordshire Select Committee on 25 November to discuss the proposal of South Staff CCG to consider stop providing hearing aids to adults unless the average hearing level (250-4000 Hz) exceeds 40 dB. The BSA presentation concentrated on three issues:

1) according to data from the National Study of Hearing, the typical hearing level of someone age 71-80 years of age is around 35 dB (skewed towards better hearing because of the inclusion of 250 Hz) so they would not be eligible for a hearing aid. In fact you would be hard pressed to meet the 40 dB fence if you stuck fingers into both ears, but the implication for communication can hardly be described as mild or insignificant. There is a need to review the fence and there is also a need to include an assessment of the day-to-day difficulties experienced by the individual.

2) The internationally respected body, NICE, are in the process is working on guidelines for adult hearing loss, so amy decision by CCG would be premature and potently attract criticism.

3) The national specification for adult hearing aids requires providers to collect outcome measures and the CCG should be using these to focus on quality of services for their population. This would directly address any concerns about unnecessary provision of hearing aids now that there are a wide range of NHS hearing aid providers, including those on the High Street.

As an impartial body, the BSA has offered support to all CCGs who would like advice and guidance, including an external audit of the services they fund.

Launch of the national research agenda for ENT, Hearing and Balance

The BSA is proud to announce the launch of the national research agenda for ENT, Hearing and Balance.

You are invited to join and to celebrate this occasion on December 3rd, 6-8 pm at the Royal Institute of British Architects, Portland Place 66, London W1B 1AD. Please register for this event with zaynab.ismail@ucl.ac.uk

The agenda highlights the research priorities set by patients, the public and healthcare professionals from across the UK. The BSA is committed to carry forward the partnerships built through this initiative and develop high value research and care for the benefit of patients and their families.

The agenda will be available online at www.entuk.org.

Advertise with BSA

CLICK HERE for more informationAdvertise with BSA advert

Invitation to apply: Position of early member to the hearing loss guideline committee group

CLICK HERE for more information

 

 

 

HOT OFF THE PRESS: The BSA Strategic Plan: 2016 – 2019

This important document gives a summary of our strategy for the next four years. It is a call to action for professionals working in hearing and balance. The strategy is the product of an extensive process for the BSA Council, and underlying each year is an action plan to ensure we achieve what we set out to do. To make this plan a reality we need all involved in the BSA to become engaged with it so we can have the maximum impact.

CLICK HERE for The BSA Strategic Plan: 2016-2019

 

VOTE ONLINE OR BY POST FOR YOUR CANDIDATE: New Trustee for BSA

Following a recent call for nominations for a Trustee on BSA Council to take up post immediately following the AGM in September, four nominations have been received.

Ballot forms can be completed and returned in 2 ways:

  1. Online on the BSA website. You will need to login using your password and also have your membership number to complete the ballot form – CLICK HERE
  2. Ballot forms can also be printed, signed, dated and posted to the British Society of Audiology, Blackburn House, Redhouse Road, Seafield, Bathgate, EH47 7AQ, or faxed to +44 (0)1506 811477. Please note emailed forms will not be accepted. CLICK HERE for your ballot form

DEADLINE: Tuesday 1st December 2015.

The result will be published on the BSA website

Chairman’s Message – Autumn 2015

‘Transforming knowledge to sound practice’ is the excellent title for the next BSA Annual Conference in April next year. This title brilliantly sums up the role of the BSA and bodes well for a really good, redesigned and relaunched conference and I hope that as many BSA members as possible will support it. The move of our conference to a different time of year was a tough decision, not without controversy- but I am convinced it was the best thing to do and it offers a great opportunity for a new ‘can’t miss’ meeting that should become an important fixture in the annual audiology calendar. The BSA’s SIGs (Special Interest Groups) have each organised sessions for the conference, so we can be confident that there will be something for everyone; the new structure of the meeting, with the first day devoted to basic science and the subsequent days focussing on clinical and translational science, is intended to meet the needs of all of our clinical, scientific and academic communities. I look forward to seeing you there!

The BSA’s role as a key source of expert and scientific advice has been emphasised again recently as we have joined forces with other interested organisations and the Alliance on hearing loss and deafness to protest against the apparent epidemic of CCGs (Commissioning Groups) that are proposing to limit the funding for hearing aids. Many of you will have seen the publicity about the decision by North Staffordshire to set a hearing threshold for the funding of aids for ‘mild’ hearing losses based on puretone thresholds. This has been much derided in the media, and the BSA has been at the forefront in challenging these plans, in close alliance with Action on Hearing Loss and the BAA. However, the rationing of hearing aids in that area is now continuing regardless and the fight has moved to a new battleground, this time in Essex. I fear that if ‘mild’ hearing loss is seen as an ‘easy win’ in cost-saving terms, these proposals are likely to spread; it is vital that we help garner all available scientific evidence so that any more money-saving proposals that will mainly affect people with age-related hearing loss are robustly contested. The BSA is going to have an increasingly important role in this affair.

The topic of adult hearing loss and how to provide the best possible help in a cash-strapped environment was discussed in detail at the one-day conference ‘Bending the Spend’ organised by the Ear Foundation in Westminster last week; I was invited to represent the BSA a speaker in what was an excellent day, and I gained an overwhelming sense of friendship and collaboration from the other speakers and delegates. It was great to see that we have many common aims with other organisations in our field.

As you will know, the administration of the BSA is now very ably looked after by a professional association management company, Fitwise Ltd, and we have closed the old BSA office in Reading. We are two months into our new working relationship with Fitwise and they have already proved themselves as an efficient, professional organisation and new partner for the BSA; I am very keen that we can now use this opportunity to focus on achieving our aims and objectives. These were discussed in detail amongst members of the council at our away day earlier this year, and  have been eloquently summarised in the BSA Strategic Plan, put together by our operations manager Laura Turton, and will be published imminently- I urge you to look out for this important document which sets out our visions and ambitions for the next 3 to 5 years.

Best wishes to all

Huw Cooper

Chair

‘Bending the Spend’: Better ways of expanding access to hearing technology

The BSA was represented by Chair Huw Cooper at the recent launch of this important report ‘Bending the Spend’ produced by Sue Archbold of the Ear Foundation, Brian Lamb, Chair of the Alliance on Hearing loss and deafness, and Ciaran O’Neill of Queen’s University Belfast. This is a key document about finding better ways of expanding access to hearing technology to improve health, wellbeing and save public money, and the BSA supports this valuable initiative.

For more information CLICK HERE

 

 

 

British Society of Audiology Annual Conference 2016

Register now at www.eventsforce.net/bsa2016

We are pleased to announce that the British Society of Audiology Annual Conference, entitled Transforming Knowledge to Sound Practice will be taking place on 25th – 27th April 2016 at the Ricoh Arena in Coventry.

The BSA Annual Conference 2016 programme has undergone a significant revamp and provides a fantastic range of themed sessions with high-quality speakers. Day 1 will focus on basic science leading into days 2 and 3 that cover applied and clinical research in collaboration with the BSA special interest groups (SIGs).   The full programme is now available online at https://www.eventsforce.net/FITWISE/media/uploaded/EVFITWISE/event_323/BSA_Programme_5th_February_v2.pdf

Conference highlights include excellent international speakers Prof. De Wet Swanepoel (South Africa), Prof Dave Moore (USA), Dr Jeffry Staab (USA), Dr Ariane Laplante-Levesque (Denmark), Bram van Dum BRUN (Australia), Thomas Fedtke (Germany). The UK speakers include Prof John Culling, Prof Adrian Davis, Prof Sven Mattys, Dr Doug Beck, Dr Piers Dawes, Prof Deb Hall, Mr John Day, Dr Helen Pryce, and Prof Stuart Rosen. Presentations on the hot topics in audiology include research priorities, outcome measures and telehealth.

 There are plenty of opportunities to engage in discussions with speakers and delegates through Q&A panel discussions, posters, and interactive workshops, including the Journal Club with participation from the journal authors.

Contact Us:

BSA Conference, Blackburn House, Redhouse Road, Seafield, West Lothian, EH47 7AQ

Email: events@Fitwise.co.uk   Tel: +44 (0) 1506 292042

GENERATE Launch: areas of research that need urgent attention: Book now!

We are delighted to announce the launch of GENERATE, the research agenda for ENT, Hearing and Balance care in the UK, on the 3rd December 2015 from 18.00 – 20.00 at the Royal Institute of British Architects, London. This will be celebrated with a drinks reception and a short presentation of the agenda, with prominent guest speakers.

GENERATE has involved patients, the public and healthcare professionals from across the UK working in partnership to decide what areas of research need to be urgently addressed. It has gained national and international attention and the results of the initiative have been eagerly awaited.

Registration for the GENERATE launch is now open. To register please CLICK HERE

Congratulations – Roy D. Patterson: Recipient of Silver Medal in Psychological and Physiological Acoustics

Congratulations to….

Roy D. Patterson, a BSA member, named recipient of the Silver Medal in Psychological and Physiological Acoustics

Read more

We’re All Ears! Membership Survey

At the BSA we want to know what you think about our membership. Please take 5 minutes out of your day to let us know what you think. We want to hear as many voices as possible so whether you are current member, you used to be a member or you have never considered being a member of the BSA please complete this survey for us.

Click on https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/BSAWAE2015

 

DISTURBING NEWS: NHS denying people hearing aids!

Press Coverage:

 

The Guardian: NHS to begin denying people hearing aids for the first time

The Daily Mail: NHS Chiefs Scrimping NHS chiefs tell deaf patients: ‘You can’t have a hearing aid – just LIP READ instead’

 

What can you do?

Stop cuts expanding to the rest of Staffordshire: 8 October 2015 Meeting

Update from Chris Wood…

 

Along with local organisation DeafVibe, we have run a local petition which has now been signed by 5,000 Staffordshire residents, triggering a discussion at a full county council meeting. This is scheduled for the 8 October 2015. There will be a 5 minute overview followed by a debate between councillors.

 

It’s a public session so please do join us.

 

For more information see: http://moderngov.staffordshire.gov.uk/ieListDocuments.aspx?CId=124&MId=5543&Ver=4

 

Stop cuts expanding to the rest of Staffordshire

Update from Chris Wood…

 

Along with local organisation DeafVibe, we have run a local petition which has now been signed by 5,000 Staffordshire residents, which triggered a discussion at a full county council meeting. 

 

For more information see: http://moderngov.staffordshire.gov.uk/ieListDocuments.aspx?CId=124&MId=5543&Ver=4

 

 

Exciting opportunities: BSA Treasurer, Trustees and more roles – be part of shaping the future!

The British Society of Audiology is at an exciting point in its history and you can be part of shaping its future. The BSA is very active and there are a number of key roles we need to recruit to.

All of these roles represent a fantastic opportunity for our members who want to contribute to the success of the society, with a vision to build knowledge and empower professionals to improve the lives of adults and children with hearing and balance problems.

There are openings for new Trustees including the Treasurer position, as well as on the Professional Practice Committee (PPC), Paediatric Audiology Interest Group (PAIG) and Adult Rehabilitation Interest Group (ARIG)

 

Click here for information about all the opportunities:   BSA Recruitment 2015

Click here for more detailed information about the Treasurer position:  BSA Treasurer

Click here for more detailed information about the Trustee positions:  BSA Trustee

Closing date: Friday 31st October 2015

Hear deaf Big Brother winner 2013, Sam Evans’ story and how you can help

This week, Sound Seekers is a beneficiary of the Radio 4 Charity appeal.

Listen here (http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b069gtk9#play) to hear deaf Big Brother winner 2013, Sam Evans’ story and insights into the challenges of being deaf in Africa compared to the UK. Hearing loss is a major problem in developing countries. Please spread the word about Sound Seekers appeal and help them provide the vital hearing care that is so desperately needed in Africa countries. 

 

Website: www.sound-seekers.org.uk

Happy lost his hearing when he was seven, after suffering from Malaria. He tried to carry on with life as normal but he was isolated, bullied and held back in school.

 

Imagine if everyone else around you can hear, but you can’t. The world becomes a quiet, lonely place.

 

I have been profoundly deaf since birth. I have been lucky to have grown up in the UK with world-class audiology services, able to receive hearing aids, lip reading lessons and all the attention I needed. Things are very different in Malawi where Happy lives.

 

In Malawi, as in many African countries, there is not one single audiologist in a country of 16 million. This means that there is no one at all who is professionally trained to evaluate or treat hearing loss.

 

Last year I visited Malawi with UK charity Sound Seekers and saw the devastating effect that deafness has on people’s lives in Africa. Many deaf children are ignored and excluded, unable to attend school because there is just no help or support for them.

 

When I visited Blantyre, I met Happy who is now 10. After he had Malaria, he couldn’t hear anything. Then Sound Seekers provided him with hearing aids. Now he can hear the teacher and play with his friends. He has finally moved up a year in school. I have seen with my own eyes the difference these hearing aids have made on a young boy’s life.

 

There are hundreds of thousands of deaf children like Happy all over Africa, who are isolated from their families and communities and have no hope of getting an education. It doesn’t have to be like this. Sound Seekers is training local medical staff to run mobile audiology clinics in six African countries, meaning some of the poorest communities across the continent can finally be reached.

 

You can help give a child with hearing loss an education and a future. A donation of £5 pays for a hearing test. £10 provides a hearing aid and batteries for a child who desperately needs them. £20 will pay for a sign language lesson for a whole class of deaf children.

 

You can give right now – online via the Radio 4 website, or by calling 0800 404 8144. That’s 0800 404 8144. Alternatively you can write a cheque to Sound Seekers and send it to Freepost, BBC Radio 4 Appeal. That’s the whole address: Freepost, BBC Radio 4 Appeal. And, very important, please mark the back of your envelope Sound Seekers.

BSA’s RESPONSE to UK National Screening Committee’s review of evidence for adult hearing screening

The UK National Screening Committee has released its review of the evidence for adult hearing screening, to which the BSA has responded through a consultation exercise that closed on 11 September 2015.

The documents are provided in the links below:

UK National Screening Committee’s Review –  CLICK HERE

BSA’s Response – CLICK HERE

 

TOP 10 PRIORITIES FOR RESEARCH IN MILD-MODERATE HEARING LOSS

The James Lind Alliance priority Setting partnership has identified the top ten priorities for research into mild-moderate hearing loss. At the final prioritisation workshop the top ten were prioritised from a list of 30 questions. The workshop involved patients, partners and representatives from relevant organisations including the BSA (represented by Dr Helen Pryce). The BSA have been involved in distributing and advertising the survey rounds of the priority setting exercise. These questions will be uploaded to the national DUET data base.

1 What adverse effects are associated with not treating mild to moderate hearing loss in adults?
2 Does the early fitting of hearing aid(s) result in increased patient benefit and/or improved cost-effectiveness of the service for adults with mild to moderate hearing loss?
3 Does the early fitting of hearing aids slow the rate of cognitive decline for adults with mild to moderate hearing loss?
4 What are the reasons for low hearing aid uptake, use and adherence for adults with mild to moderate hearing loss?
5 Can new technologies replace hearing aids for the treatment of mild to moderate hearing loss in adults?
6 Can stem cell therapy offer a cure for mild to moderate hearing loss in adults?
7 Does early identification, diagnosis and treatment of mild to moderate hearing loss prevent further deterioration of hearing in adults?
8 Could new developments to digital hearing aids offer improved speech perception in noisy environments for adults with mild to moderate hearing loss?
9 How realistic are hearing tests for assessing the everyday hearing abilities of adults with mild to moderate hearing loss?
10 Could the use of real-world sounds to help program hearing aids in clinic (rather than tones or beeps) improve hearing aid effectiveness for adults with mild to moderate hearing loss?

BSA Twilight Meeting 12 Nov 2015 – Does Auditory Verbal Therapy have a role on Paediatric Audiology?

CLICK HERE for more information and to register.

 

Hearing Aids for Music Survey

Hearing aids for music: exploring the music listening behaviour of people with hearing impairments

The team are running a survey exploring the experiences of audiologists in the clinic which can be accessed directly at http://tinyurl.com/audiologyandmusicsurvey or through the project website www.musicandhearingaids.org.

For more information email musicandhearingaids@leeds.ac.uk or follow www.twitter.com/musicndeafness on Twitter.

Project Background

The topic of music and hearing loss, including NIHL due to loud music in clubs and the use of ear phones, has been well publicised recently and was raised during lastyears’ BAA Conference. A further article on clinical strategies for music listening by Dr Marshall Chasin was included in the Spring 2015 issue of BAA Magazine along with a letter from a hearing aid user and article on hearing aid settings.

We are pleased to follow this by announcing a new research collaboration between Dr Alinka Greasley, Lecturer in Music Psychology at the University of Leeds, and Dr Harriet Crook, Lead Clinical Scientist at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust which will explore how people use hearing aids in a range of musical situations, whether at home or at a classical symphony or rock concert.

Very little is known about how hearing aids can affect ‘everyday’ music listening and initial studies suggest that hearing aid users can experience problems when listening to music, such as acoustic feedback, distortion and reduced tone quality.

The research will be the first to combine hearing test data with social psychological data to create a systematic exploration into how hearing aids affect music listening experiences and behaviours. As well as academic publications and presentations, the team will use the results to provide resources for clinicians, a website and discussion forum. They also hope to create an agenda for future signal processing research for digital hearing aids.

Dr Robert Fulford, a Post-doctoral Research Fellow at the University, is also working on the three year project, which has been awarded £247,295 in funding from the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AH/M00368X/1). The team are joined by an advisory panel consisting of experts in auditory processing, signal processing, hearing aid fitting, hearing therapy and deaf education.

We are currently recruiting audiologists to take part in a short survey which explores experiences of discussing music listening issues with patients and optimising hearing aids for music. If you would like to take part, or for further information, go to www.musicandhearingaids.org or email the team at musicandhearingaids@leeds.ac.uk.

NOW AVAILABLE: New BSA Tinnitus in Children Practice Guidance

The New BSA Tinnitus in Children Practice Guidance is now available.

CLICK HERE or visit the RESOURCES section on our website.

The Guidance offers child-friendly, practical advice for those wanting to develop their skills in the management of children with tinnitus, at all levels of severity.

It is intended for a multidisciplinary audience including audiologists, medical professionals, school nurses, teachers of the deaf, and psychologists. The Guidance covers assessment, management strategies for home and school, signs of tinnitus distress, assessment measures, and recommendations for developing a Paediatric Tinnitus Service, and more.

DEADLINE EXTENDED TO 30 SEPTEMBER 2015: National Adult Aural Rehabilitation Survey

National Adult Aural Rehabilitation Survey

Across the UK, there are wide variations in adult aural rehabilitation practice offered by audiology services, both publicly and privately funded. Yet there is not a clear overview of what adult rehabilitation looks like in the UK today. With the rapidly changing landscape, and radical changes in the NHS over the last few years, it is important to establish a benchmark against which to assess future audiology services.

The British Society of Audiology has partnered with the British Academy of Audiology and British Society of Hearing Aid Audiologists and we invite you, as a hearing healthcare professional, to complete this online survey.

This survey will take about 15 minutes, and all responses will be anonymous. The deadline for submission is 30 September 2015.

Please take time out of your busy schedules to complete this important survey. We very much value your thoughts and opinions. The results will be published in the audiological professional newsletters and websites (BSA, BAA, BSHAA).

We thank you in advance for completing this important survey.

To take the surgery CLICK HERE

 

FINAL CHANCE: Priority Setting Partnership for Mild to Moderate Hearing Loss

James Lind Alliance Priority Setting Partnership for Mild to Moderate Hearing Loss – your chance to decide the top 10 questions for research!

Our final priority setting workshop is taking place on Thursday 3rd September in Birmingham. I am writing to ask whether you would like to attend this workshop and help decide the final top 10 questions for research into mild-moderate hearing loss? The attached leaflet has more information about the event.

Further details about the PSP can be found on the Hearing Link website: http://www.hearinglink.org/james-lind-alliance-priority-setting-partnership or CLICK HERE

BSA APPLIED RESEARCH GRANT – DEADLINE 11 SEPTEMBER 2015

Apply for a BSA Applied Research Grant now! Deadline 11 September 2015.

For more information and an application from CLICK HERE 

 

 

 

 

LATEST NEWS: North Staffs Hearing Aid commissioning situation

For the latest news on the North Staffs Hearing Aid commissioning situation – CLICK HERE

HAPPY BIRTHDAY: New BSA website celebrates its first birthday!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY! New BSA website celebrates its first birthday.

We are celebrating the new BSA website’s high hit rate, international success and impact on promoting excellent research and evidence-based Audiological care around the globe.

The new BSA website went live on the 16th June 2014 with initial traffic expectations being far exceed from the first month. We received 4793 hits in the first month and are currently receiving approximately 5500 hits per month, with a total of ±55 000 over the first 12 month period. Our website is dynamic, constantly evolving based on the changing face of Audiology, user trends and YOUR feedback. The website is interactive with Facebook and Twitter.

The key features of the BSA website are:

  • Free and easy access to BSA Policies and Procedures
  • Information about conferences and events, with online registration for BSA events
  • News updates on what is happening in the field of Audiology
  • Online access to Audacity (open access to previous editions with members only access to current edition)
  • Online access to the International Journal of Audiology (members only)
  • Access to Lunch & Learn and Lightning Updates
  • Direct access and updates on the work of the BSA Special Interest Groups and news of their publications and international collaboration

Jane Wild, Wayne Ellis, Tracey Twomey, Julie Reading, Laura Turton Charlotte Turtle (Social Media)
Nicci Campbell (Website Manager)
Website team

 

New edition of Audacity now available to BSA Members

Being a BSA Member means that you have access to the most recent edition of Audacity!

Audacity is crammed full of interesting articles and news to keep you at the cutting edge of what is happening in Audiology. It promotes learning and knowledge, reflects the clinical, academic and research age in which we live and explores new ideas.  Members enjoy your latest edition click here and enter your password.

Past editions have open access click here

 

SAVE THE DATE: BSA Annual Conference 25-27 April 2016

The British Society of Audiology are delighted to announce that their inaugural conference will be hosted at the Ricoh Arena, Coventry from Monday 25th to Wednesday 27th April 2016.

Each day will have a specific focus:

Monday 25th April – Basic Science Research

Tuesday 26th April – Translational & Clinical Research

Wednesday 27th April – Translational, Clinical Research and Service Developments

A unprecedented opportunity to network with clinicians, translational and basic researchers to forge joint understanding, collaborations and consider the future direction of all of those involved in hearing science.

 

 

CONGRATULATIONS to Prof David R. Moore & APD Group

Congratulations to Prof David R. Moore who recently received the Career Award in Hearing or Balance’ at the American Academy of Audiology (AAA) Annual Conference.

In his letter, Dr James Jerger congratulated Dave on his outstanding achievements in the field of Audiology and singled out the BSA APD White Paper:

“I will focus on just one extraordinary contribution that has profoundly altered our understanding of what has come to be called APD in children. In a white paper published in the International Journal of Audiology, Dave and his colleagues recently challenged the entire theoretical framework that had undergirded clinical and research activities relating to the constellation of symptoms, observations, and clinical test development, especially in the USA, for decades…. The importance of this development for advancing our evaluation and treatment of children who do not seem to ‘aud’ well, and preserving the integrity of our profession, cannot be overstated”

Congratulations Dave and colleagues!

Moore, D.R., Rosen, S., Bamiou, D-E, Campbell, N.G. & Sirimanna, T. (2013)
Evolving concepts of developmental auditory processing disorder (APD): A British Society of Audiology APD Special Interest Group ‘white paper’, International Journal of Audiology, 52, 3-13. PMID:23039930

DOI: 10.3109/14992027.2012.723143

UPCOMING TALK: 7th July 2015 – HTA funding and developing studies

IMPORTANT OPPORTUNITY

The National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Clinical Research Network (CRN): Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) Specialty would like to invite any Ear, Nose and Throat, Hearing and Balance professionals who are involved (or who would like to become involved) in research to a talk by Professor Jane Blazeby on applying for HTA funding and developing studies.

It will take place on the 7th July 2015, 18.00 – 19.00, in Liverpool (the evening before the British Academic Conference in Otolaryngology)

Please contact sofia.qadir@nihr.ac.uk  to confirm attendance or if you have any questions.

NOW AVAILABLE: CHAIRMAN’S MESSAGE – SPRING 2015

CLICK HERE for the Chairman’s Message – Spring 2015

Chairman’s message – Spring 2015

Knowledge, Learning, Practice, Impact: these are the key headings within the BSA’s logo and they neatly sum up the raison d’être of the society- indeed they are probably the best description of the BSA’s ‘brand’, if we have one. The concept of a ‘brand’ may seem alien to a scientific and learned society and more appropriate for the commercial world, but it does help a great deal to define our aims and objectives. These will be explored and developed in more detail at the council strategy day on May 15th, which will be a great opportunity for all of our trustees and advisors to get to know each other better, plan the BSA’s strategy for the next 12-24 months, and to define roles for everyone involved; the success of the society depends on the enthusiasm and ideas of its members and council. The day will be led by our new Operations Manager Laura Turton, who, since her recent appointment, has amply demonstrated her apparently boundless energy, rapid understanding of what the BSA needs, and ability to get things done- just what the society needs and indeed I for one now wonder how we ever managed without her.

As ever, the BSA has a full and active programme of learning events throughout this year and next (see our constantly updated website for all the details). The regular ‘lunch and learn’ talks are an important resource and I would urge anyone who hasn’t got hooked on them to get into the habit- they work particularly well when watched as a group as part of regular team training, when the talk can lead to sometimes lively discussion and debate! The ‘big’ learning event in the BSA calendar is the annual conference (AC), and the council recently made the momentous decision to move the timing of the AC to the spring – so the next AC will be in April 2016. The overwhelming feeling was that the time has come for a significant re-launch of the AC, at a new time of year (well away from other large UK audiology conferences), in a new, improved format. I think this is an exciting opportunity to put on a great new conference, organised in close collaboration with the BSA SIGs (Special Interest Groups)- so there will be something for everyone; my hope is that this new AC will become the ‘can’t miss’ audiology event of the year and will attract much greater numbers of our members from all backgrounds than in recent years. Full details will follow imminently! Meanwhile, the two-day ‘basic science’ meeting in Cardiff in September this year, organised by John Culling, will be an important forum for scientists, researchers and clinicians to hear about and debate the latest findings in audiology and hearing science- with plenty of opportunity for discussion, interaction and of course socialising!

Some turnover in BSA council membership is inevitable, and the recent resignation of two trustees means that we are now looking for ‘new blood’ – please consider coming on board; this is a real chance to get involved and be part of a great team that can help the BSA continue on its journey of modernisation and ever-increasing impact. If you want to find out more- please get in touch soon!

Best wishes to all our members and everyone in the audiology and hearing science community.

Huw Cooper

April 2015

NEW ACTION PLAN: The new Action Plan on Hearing Loss is now available

The BSA are pleased to report the publication of the Action Plan on Hearing Loss.

CLICK HERE for the report  Action Plan on Hearing Loss – Final 20.3.15

The plan provides information to commissioners, GPs, policy makers and healthcare providers about the range and complexity of the consequences of hearing loss at any life stage. The BSA have been working with the Alliance on Hearing loss and Deafness to develop the report  and have lobbied hard to bring this to publication.

The report sets out five key objectives in in the following areas:

1. Good prevention – for example reducing the numbers of young people and adults with noise induced hearing loss; including through immunisation and screening and utilising quality data to understand the social, financial and personal health advantages

2. Earlier diagnosis – for example improving outcomes for babies with hearing loss, increasing identification of the number of children and adults in at risk groups

3. Integrated services – for example reducing developmental and educational gaps due to childhood hearing loss and increasing the number of children, young people and adults with a personalised care plan

4. Increased independence and ageing well – for example including access to technology including support by mobile or tele healthcare and improving access to wider health services from primary to end of life care

5. Good learning outcomes – for example including improving employment opportunities for young people and adults and reducing development and attainment gaps between deaf and hearing children

NORTH STAFF CUTS TO HEARING AIDS – BBC COVERAGE OF THIS DISTURBING DEVELOPMENT

CLICK HERE for BBC Coverage

CLICK HERE for more information

The BSA and other stakeholder groups are greatly concerned with the outcomes of the proposed rationing for hearing impaired people who will be denied access to a cost effective intervention – this at odds with the content of the Monitor report and a substantial scientific evidence base. We are also concerned at the process leading to the decision taken by the CCG.

Paul Breckell (Chief Executive of Action on Hearing Loss) has written a formal letter of complaint to Norman Lamb MP (Minister of State for Care and Support).

The BSA will be responding shortly.

CLICK HERE to see how YOU can help.

John Day
BSA Trustee

 

 

CALL TO ACTION: North Staffs Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) Board Approves Eligibility (Rationing) Criteria for Adult Hearing Aids

North Staffs Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) Board Approves Eligibility (Rationing) Criteria for Adult Hearing Aids.

In Summer 2014 The CCG made public proposals to limit eligibility for hearing aid provision. They subsequently consulted and announced that the decision would be deferred to 2015. On Wednesday 4th March a revised proposal was presented to their Board and approved. If implemented this will result in the hearing aids not being routinely provided for patients who are diagnosed with a mild hearing loss, based upon audiometric criteria. Additionally, those patients with hearing loss diagnosed as moderate AND with a functional score below a specified level (using the HHIE-S questionnaire tool) will not be eligible for hearing aid provision. There are some exclusions to this rule for defined complex patient groups.

Further details are available CLICK HERE

CLICK HERE to see how YOU can help.

It is with some irony that Monitor (the sector regulator for health services in England) released a report this week on ‘NHS Adult Hearing Services in England’. The following is an extract from P14 of that report:

‘What is the prevalence and impact of hearing loss? ……..

Hearing loss can lead to communication difficulties, social isolation, and emotional distress and can significantly adversely affect a person’s quality of life. This appears to affect not only the person with hearing loss, but also those around them such as their partner, family and/or carer.

Hearing loss also increases the risk of mental health problems, including depression. It is strongly associated with an increased rate of cognitive decline and an increased risk of dementia. There is evidence to suggest that people with mild hearing loss are almost twice as likely to develop dementia. The risk for people with moderate hearing loss is three times higher, and for people with severe hearing loss it is almost five times higher.

Prevention and early diagnosis of hearing loss can significantly reduce the impacts of hearing loss, including social isolation and mental ill health.

Hearing loss can also reduce a person’s ability to manage other health conditions independently. About half of older people in the UK with hearing loss have additional disabilities or long-term health conditions.

In addition to increasing use of health and social care services, hearing loss can increase unemployment and sick leave rates, and limit opportunities for career progression. The International Longevity Centre UK estimated that, in 2013, due to lower employment rates for those with hearing loss than across the rest of the population, the UK economy lost £24.8 billion in potential economic output.’

The BSA and other stakeholder groups are greatly concerned with the outcomes of the proposed rationing for hearing impaired people who will be denied access to a cost effective intervention – this at odds with the content of the Monitor report and a substantial scientific evidence base. We are also concerned at the process leading to the decision taken by the CCG.

Paul Breckell (Chief Executive of Action on Hearing Loss) has written a formal letter of complaint to Norman Lamb MP (Minister of State for Care and Support). See Letter to Norman Lamb MP letter 5 March 2015

The BSA will be responding shortly.

John Day
BSA Trustee

 

 

PATIENT CHOICE IN ADULT HEARING SERVICES: Monitor’s 2014 findings

‘Monitor’, the sector regulator for Health Services in England, ran a project in 2014 and invited views from patients, commissioners, GPs, providers of adult hearing services and other interested parties on how choice and AQP are working in adult hearing services.

Before 2012, these adult hearing services were generally provided in hospitals. Since 2012, some patients in England with age-related hearing loss have been given the chance to choose their service provider under the ‘any qualified provider’ approach. The approach allows any provider meeting the requirements set by the local commissioner to offer defined services to local patients. Around half of commissioners have taken up the option of using the any qualified provider approach for adult hearing services.

The project looked at what has happened since choice was introduced and  sets out how the sector could ensure that choice works better for patients.

Overall, findings are that found that patients like choosing who provides their care. Seven in ten patients surveyed who were offered a choice found it useful to have a choice.  Patients reported that having a choice made them feel more in control and allows them to choose the service that best suited them.

To view Monitor’s report CLICK HERE    

To see the annexes of the report CLICK HERE 

‘ALL EARS INTERNATIONAL’: Tuesday 3rd March is International Ear Care Day

MESSAGE FROM GLYN VAUGHAN…

Tuesday 3rd March is International Ear Care Day. It is a day to globally recognise the need for ear and hearing care – a day to remember how precious hearing is and how easy it is to lose.

All Ears Cambodia has been fighting ear disease and helping those with disabling hearing loss for over 12 years. Through All Ears International, we are now developing programs in other countries such as Bhutan and North Korea.

I want to take this opportunity to thank you for helping us in our endeavours, and showing enthusiasm for our work over the years.  We appreciate your support and continued interest in those with hearing problems in less privileged parts of the world.

I would like to communicate with you about our work and the issues we address. We will share updates about our projects in Cambodia and beyond, articles of professional interest and volunteering opportunities.

Please do sign up to keep receiving updates from me.

Yours

Glyn Vaughan

Director – All Ears Cambodia

Program Manager – All Ears North Korea

Clinical and Educational Advisor – All Ears Bhutan

Founder and Trustee – All Ears International

T: 855-(0)11-775063

info@allearscambodia.org

www.allearscambodia.org

Quick guide: Here’s how to ask your MP to sign the Early Day Motion on Hearing loss

Ask your MP to sign the Early Day Motion on Hearing loss

Alan Meale MP tabled an Early Day Motion (EDM) #772 on 04/02/2015 in the House of Commons on HEARING LOSS. The motion calls on the Government to request the NHS to commission NICE to prioritise the immediate development of a hearing loss clinical guideline to establish and maintain quality standards for people with hearing loss. CLICK HERE for more information about the EDM.

Early Day Motions are used by MPs to express their opinion on something or to draw the attention of the Commons to a particular issue or campaign. The greater the number of MP signatures the greater the potential impact.

Here’s how to write to your MP to ask him/her to sign the Early Day Motion on Hearing Loss. The following steps will only take 2 minutes of your time!

Please act now – MPs need to have signed up before 30 March.

  1. Check on http://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/business-papers/commons/early-day-motions/edm-detail1/?session=2014-15&edmnumber=772 to see if your MP has already signed the motion.
  2. If not, or if you’re not sure who your MP is, click on https://www.writetothem.com/
  3. Enter your postcode to bring up your local politicians (use the postcode of where you are registered to vote)
  4. Scroll down to  find your MP’s name
  5. It will bring up your MP’s name and start a letter to them for you
  6. Either paste in the following text, or write your own message

I am writing to you to ask you to sign the Early Day Motion on Hearing Loss which was tabled on 4 February 2015.

Hearing loss can have a devastating effect on people’s quality of life, family life, education and employment opportunities, and is associated with an increased risk of depression and dementia.

I would like to draw your attention to the forthcoming National Action Plan on Hearing Loss. I ask that Government commissions NICE to prioritise the immediate development of hearing loss clinical guidelines for the NHS, to establish and maintain quality standards for patients with hearing loss.

  1. Enter your personal details (name, address, email)
  2. Review and send
  3. They will send you an email, which you need to click to respond to, in order for the message to go.
  4. You will get a confirmation email from your MP.

You can make a real difference by asking your MP to sign the Early Day Motion on Hearing loss.

 

IN MEMORY of Professor Carole Hackney

The BSA is sad to announce the recent passing away of Professor Carole Hackney. Carole was an eminent auditory neuroscientist who made a huge contribution to the science of hearing. In 1997 she won the Thomas Simm Littler Prize for Contributions to Audiology. She was also the wife of Professor David Furness, Secretary of the BSA, and will be greatly missed by him and all who knew her.

Carole was born in Preston, Lancashire, on the 10th of May 1955. Within months she and her mother Mavis, a teacher, followed her father, Malcolm Walker, an RAF aircrew officer, to many different RAF bases, including Nicosia and Akrotiri in Cyprus, and also lived in several English counties. After two younger sisters, Janet and Katherine, were born, the family left service life in 1969, and settled in Kendal, Cumbria. Carole’s early years had thus accustomed her to adapting to travel and change, mixing with children of many different backgrounds and nationalities at her various schools. Family holidays were usually spent camping or caravanning, and she loved these outdoor adventures, showing a great interest in watching birds and animals. From Kendal High School, her outstanding academic results enabled her to enter Manchester University and gain a B.Sc with 1st class Honours in Genetics and Cell Biology, and then progress to a PhD in Cell Biology. She married Paul Hackney, whom she had met while they were both at school in Kendal, and then became a lecturer at Keele University. Paul and Carole had two sons, Sam in 1986 and Peter in 1991.

At Keele, Carole employed Dave Furness as her first post-doctoral researcher and together they established collaborative scientific careers. As Carole developed her career, she first set up an electron microscope unit and then became head of Department of Communication and Neuroscience. Soon after, she became head of School when the Departments of Biological Sciences and Communication and Neuroscience were merged to form the new School of Life Sciences. Despite the administrative distractions her research career continued to flourish and she published major research articles and chapters in books, some with Dave and some independently. During this productive time, Carole visited many countries for scientific conferences and research, some highlights including Czechoslovakia (before the fall of the Eastern Bloc), Norway, and Japan. During this time, she and her husband Paul enjoyed shared interests and happy times, holidaying on Mull, bird-watching, and rehabilitating injured birds of prey such as barn owls, buzzards and kestrels, among other birds and animals. But their lives and careers diverged and they were divorced, although they continued to cooperate amicably in the education and welfare of their two sons. She retained the surname Hackney by which she had become well known in her scientific career.

At this difficult time in her life, Carole decided it was time to seek new pastures and so moved to the University of Wisconsin-Madison to focus on research with colleagues and friends in the US. After a time, however, concerns for her family persuaded her to return to the UK where she briefly held a part time post at Keele once more. Then the possibility of a move to Cambridge University arose and she joined the Department of Anatomy as a lecturer. There, she found it difficult to find new friends, and struggled with depression and alcohol dependence, so Dave began to travel down to visit her on a regular basis and they decided to marry in 2008. Carole left her job and returned to South Cheshire to be with Dave and they married in August, shortly after which they moved into Keele village.

Carole’s career then took a completely different turn. Although still retaining her academic interest and research activities with long term friends and collaborators, she decided to set herself up in business. With the arrival of an ultramicrotome (a piece of equipment needed to prepare samples for electron microscopy), given to her by an ex-colleague from Keele, she started a company called Advanced Imaging and Microscopy, and, with a little help from Dave, set up two electron microscopes of her own in the garage. Two years into this venture, Carole died in a tragic accident, an untimely passing, leaving her grieving husband and family. She was loved deeply and was not only a beautiful, intelligent and imaginative lady, but a scientist who has made significant contributions to our knowledge of hearing through her 65 research papers in journals, and many book chapters, including revisions of the inner ear chapter of Gray’s Anatomy. All who knew her were touched by her supportive, caring attitude, and the help she gave to many people in her career will never be forgotten. Goodbye to our dearest Carole.

 

Message from Prof Dave Furness, her husband

Thank you for your condolences and messages of sympathy. Carole’s funeral took place on 4th March 2015.

Dave Furness

 

WITH GREAT SADNESS (updated with funeral arrangments): Carole Hackney, Professor of Neuroscience, has passed away

Carole Hackney, Professor of Neuroscience, has passed away suddenly. Carole was a very well known and much respected researcher, BSA member and supporter.

She leaves behind her husband David Furness, Secretary of the BSA.

Our thoughts are with David and their families.

 

Message from Dave

Dear All

Thank you for your condolences and messages of sympathy. Carole’s funeral will take place on 4th March, 3.20 PM at Bradwell Crematorium, Chatterley Close, Bradwell, Newcastle-under-Lyme, Staffordshire, ST5 8LE. It will be followed by refreshments at a venue that will be announced shortly.

There is a memorial website where further details can be found, which will be updated periodically. Please go to

http://memorials.goodwinfuneralhome.co.uk/memorial/02-17-2015-CaroleMavis-Hackney

Feel free to contribute stories, pictures and make donations. Family flowers only, otherwise donations can be made to Carole’s preferred charities, Shelter and Age UK, or to one of your own choice.

Dave Furness

EAR AID NEPAL: Exciting volunteering opportunities in Nepal and good news story

EAR AID NEPAL supports people in Nepal who have ear disease and deafness. 

To learn more about their inspiring work CLICK HERE

More useful links

Opportunities for volunteering Ear Aid Nepal

Press Release Ear Aid Nepal – Baby Asmita

 

 

 

 

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF AUDIOLOGY FEB 2015, Vol. 54 now available online

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF AUDIOLOGY FEB 2015, Vol. 54 & National Hearing Conservation Association (NHCA) Supplement… 

NOW AVAILABLE to BSA MEMBERS CLICK HERE

 

CLICK HERE to join the BSA, if you are not already a member

As a member, you will receive:

– Online access to the International Journal of Audiology every month & access to the back catalogue of Journals
– 3 Issues of the Audacity – the BSA Magazine
– Membership of BSA Special Interest Groups
– Reduced rates at Conferences and Meetings
– Free NDCS Membership

MAKE A DIFFERENCE IN DEVELOPING AUDIOLOGY IN GHANA – Volunteering opportunties and donations

In a recent Lightning Update Prof Kevin Munro highlighted the value of supporting the development of Audiology in Ghana.

There is already some infra-structure in place and a very dedicated team in Ghana who are making a real difference. You can become involved as a volunteer or by making a donation.

CLICK HERE to see this Lightning Update and for more information

CLICK HERE to make a donation

 

We greatly value your support in developing Audiology services in Ghana!

 

GOOD NEWS: North, East and West Devon CCG is now dropping plans to ration hearing aids

UPDATE: 13 January

Hearing aid rationing update

It is reported that North, East and West Devon CCG is now dropping plans to ration hearing aids, see http://www.pulsetoday.co.uk/news/commissioning-news/ccg-drops-plan-to-ration-hearing-aids/20008880.article#.VLURg8Ywh0s

John Day/BSA Council Trustee

 

UPDATE: 8 January 2015

Attention of members is drawn to the following news item:http://www.theguardian.com/society/2015/jan/03/hearing-aids-supply-cuts-nhs-depression-dementia?CMP=twt_gu

This article reflects the outcomes of a recent survey of all commissioners in England by Action on Hearing Loss.

 More locally, North East and West Devon CCG are now indicating that they will be will be following up previously announced temporary changes to service funding (that included rationing of hearing aids to unilateral fitting only) through involvement of local clinicians. A process of deciding which proposals should progress to the development of formal commissioning policy for implementation in 2015/16 will occur. See http://www.newdevonccg.nhs.uk/about-us/urgent-and-necessary-measures/101305)

John Day/BSA Trustee and Council Member

 

UPDATE: 3 November 2014

The North Staffs CCG have advised the BSA that a decision could not be made on the proposal in its current format.  They have indicated that their next step is  to produce a commissioning policy to specify eligibility criteria for hearing aids which reflects the CPAG findings, the local population needs, the learning from  engagement and their financial position. This will be reconsidered next year. Further detail is provided in the email (below) and an the following link Hearing aids briefing – October 14 v2. The BSA will be maintaining its close interest in the policy development and decision-making process.

John Day/BSA Trustee and Council Member

From: Dale Ann-Marie (CSU) Staffs and Lancs CSU Sent: 31 October 2014 15:35 To: John Day (BCUHB – Audiology) Subject: North Staffordshire Clinical Commisionning Group – Hearing Aids update and briefing

Dear John

Thank you for your continued interest and engagement with North Staffordshire CCG over the proposal to decommission hearing aid services for people with mild to moderate hearing loss. The information and feedback supplied by your organisation and the others who have contributed to the engagement exercise and your interest in this process over the previous months have been very useful. We have considered your feedback along with the significant amount of feedback that we have received. Thank you.

We committed to provide an update regarding the proposals to everyone who is interested in this particular matter and we are pleased to include this as attached.

An important part of the process has been presenting our progress and our findings from the engagement that the CCG undertook with patients, the public and interested groups, to local authority health overview and scrutiny committees representing the area that the plans would affect. With this in mind North Staffordshire CCG presented this update to the Healthy Staffordshire Select Committee on September 22. The CCG was also invited to present to the Health and Wellbeing Scrutiny Committee at Newcastle Borough Council on September 24 and Staffordshire Moorlands District Council Health and Community Overview and Scrutiny Committee on the 30 September.

The feedback and recommendations from all three committees was presented to the CCG’s Commissioning Finance and Performance Committee who felt a decision could not be made on the proposal in its current format.  The next step for the CCG is to produce a commissioning policy to specify eligibility criteria for hearing aids which reflects the CPAG findings, the local population needs, the learning from our engagement and our financial position. This will be taken through a Quality Impact Assessment and an Equality Impact Assessment. It will then be presented to the Commissioning, Finance and Performance Committee next year for discussion and debate. As such, the CCG Governing Body, which meets on the 5th November will receive an update regarding this rather than a final decision.

The wealth of feedback received by the CCG throughout this engagement to date has been invaluable and is a vital ingredient in helping us consider the challenges that clinical commissioners face. We thank you for your continued involvement and for the time and effort you and your colleagues have put into providing the information you have shared with us to date.

Marcus Warnes

Chief Operating Officer

North Staffordshire Clinical Commissioning Group

 

ONGOING UPDATE: On health of Professor Adrian Davis, former BSA Chairman

UPDATE: 22/10/2014

Adrian continues to make excellent progress. He is now at home, where he is receiving the medical and therapy support he needs to continue his very positive progress. The next update on this website will very likely be from Adrian himself.

 

UPDATE: 26/09/2014

Adrian continues to make good, steady and pleasing progress, although his recovery is likely to take some months.  He is still quite poorly but well enough to have moved out of the High Dependency unit and onto a ward. He is enjoying getting and reading all the ‘get well’ messages and cards and sends his thanks for the great support he is receiving from friends and colleagues.

Adrian’s family have asked that people only send personal messages though and not anything work-related, and ask that these are sent by post and not via email to the BSA at 80 Brighton Road, Reading, RG6 1PS where they can be collated and sent on to his family.

 

UPDATE:  07/09/2014

We are pleased to be able to report that Professor Adrian Davis is making sure and steady progress. Our good friend and colleague (and former BSA Chairman) Adrian became unwell in August and subsequently underwent surgery.  He had initially been recuperating well but later became very ill. He continues to receive treatment in Intensive Care but he is taking the first positive steps on the road to recovery.

It will be some time before Adrian is ready to receive any visitors, or direct contacts, but Adrian’s family would very much welcome now those ‘Get Well’ messages that so many people have expressed a wish to send. If you would like to send a card or message, please send them to the BSA at 80 Brighton Road, Reading, RG6 1PS where they can be collated and sent on to his family.

 

 

 

AVAILABLE TO MEMBERS: 2014 Annual Report available

Available to members

http://www.thebsa.org.uk/members-pages/

 

 

 

6th August: From Council member John Day who represented the BSA at a ‘technical’ meeting with the North Staffordshire CCG on 23rd July at Newcastle-under-Lyme.

Update 6th August: From Council member John Day who represented the BSA at a ‘technical’ meeting with the North Staffordshire CCG on 23rd July at Newcastle-under-Lyme.

Download the BSA Formal Response

The meeting had been arranged at the request of some of the stakeholder organisations including the BSA. The purpose of the meeting was to have discussions to clarify the process and to examine the evidence and scoring applied by the CCG for this intervention. As we know the intervention being considered is fitting hearing aids to adults with mild and moderate hearing loss. The CCG have used a ‘modified Portsmouth Scorecard’ which assigns points for several factors in order to guide commissioner decisions on funding of interventions. The organisations represented at the meeting were the BSA, BAA, Action on Hearing Loss, NCHA, DeafVibe, DeafLinks, and University of North Staffs Audiology Service. There were several representatives from the CCG and their communication support arm present. Despite our requests, the detailed scoring of the intervention against the scorecard factors was not provided in advance but was circulated as hard copies during the meeting. A few days before the meeting the CCG requested and was provided with extensive additional material compiled by Action on Hearing Loss to which the BSA and others had made a contribution.

At the meeting the temperature was hot and there were attitudes to match, with debate over those factors/criteria subject to contention. For some factors the intervention scored maximum points so we did not dwell. However, for the remainder, and despite the provision of new evidence there was no agreement on scoring and dismay over the scores assigned by the CCG. We were also advised of a change in the CCG’s prioritisation framework process as described in a new version of the associated document (2.1) tabled at the meeting.

Following the meeting and based upon the disclosed scoring we were then in a position to prepare a more comprehensive response by the required deadline. The BSA response was submitted on 31st July and is attached for your information. Our response was a collective effort within the BSA and we were able to draw on expert knowledge from clinical and research professionals. On this occasion, the respective stakeholder organisations provided individual responses to reflect their particular focus/interests. However, there was some collaboration between parties and I think the individual responses complement each other very well. Indeed, overall the collaborative effort from the different stakeholder groups remains a positive to take from the process.

Aside from the provision of further evidence and challenge to the CCG over use of evidence, scoring and the prioritisation scorecard (technical matters) there has also been a public engagement process run by the CCG that has seen surveys completed. I understand that the response rate has been very high compared to others that have occurred previously in the locality. We were advised at the meeting that a final CCG Board decision is not anticipated until October.

In common with other organisations the BSA has serious concerns over the process and conduct of the CCG in its engagement with stakeholder organisations. We have already submitted one Freedom of Information (FOI) request and may need to follow this up. Our efforts are continuing, including in collaboration with others. Further updates will be provided in due course and I remain happy to receive comments or respond to questions from members on this important matter. I encourage members to monitor this site for updates and the Action on Hearing Loss website for on-going campaigning/media initiatives.

Download the BSA Formal Response

IMPORTANT UPDATE – North Staffordshire CGC Proposals for Individuals Requiring Hearing Aids With Mild/Moderate Hearing Loss

The BSA is responding to proposals by the North Staffordshire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) that if implemented would see decommissioning of hearing aid services for patients with mild and moderate hearing loss – http://www.northstaffsccg.nhs.uk/hearing-aids.

The BSA recognises that the outcome may have repercussions beyond the local area. We are coordinating our questions and submissions to the CCG with other interested groups and have participated in a letter from the Hearing Loss and Deafness Alliance to the relevant Minister Norman Lamb {link to letter – see email attachment}.

Update: From Council member John Day who represented the BSA at an engagement event organised by the CCG on 2nd July at Leek, Staffordshire:

This event appeared to follow the same format as one held on 25th July. There were around 60+ people present including service users, local Audiologists, and stakeholder groups from the third sector and professional bodies. There were a couple of introductory presentations during which the speakers were challenged repeatedly (and heatedly) with questions from patients and third parties, but were keen to deflect to the follow up smaller group sessions. This then occurred with 6 or so round tables each chaired by a CCG person. At my table the CCG rep(incidentally, chair of the Group that performed the prioritisation exercise) was keen to state that the focus of the event was to seek service user views – those I heard were emotional, articulate and highly supportive of the need for hearing aids services to continue (ie, against proposal). Service users appreciated that professionals were present to support them. Audiology professionals also clearly articulated the impact of hearing loss and benefit of hearing aids that they see on a daily basis, this included but was not limited to: benefits of early amplification (of course compromised by not amplifying mild/moderate losses), wider impacts on individual, family and society, impact on those with tinnitus and association of hearing loss with dementia. The CCG was interested in alternatives to hearing aids (eg lip-reading, counselling and advice) – the response provided was that such interventions would normally be an adjunct to hearing aid fitting rather than be alternatives.

We then reconvened for the CCG to close the event and there were lots of pacifying words about the willingness of the CCG to listen – although for the sake of hearing impaired people in their area perhaps the key issue is whether the CCG will act on what they hear. The CCG also released information on the evidence base that informed the proposal and the overall score achieved against their prioritisation framework.

We have already posed questions (early in June) in order to learn more about the decision making process, specifically the scoring against individual factors/criteria within the prioritisation framework. To date answers have not been provided and we will likely need to submit questions through a Freedom of Information (FOI) request that will oblige a response. It is unfortunate that the CCG has not responded to these reasonable questions. We have explained that answers to these questions would allow the BSA to help the CCG in its decision-making process including interpretation of the evidence-base. We believe that the BSA is well placed to offer a range of expert advice from across the Audiology academic/research area and from a range of clinical professionals.

The event did not provide the opportunity to examine the evidence base that the CCG has used (material was only circulated electronically at the end of the event) or scrutinise the interpretation of that data. Following discussion with colleagues from other stakeholder groups and with a CCG representative it is anticipated that a meeting will now be arranged to discuss the technical issues where the stakeholder groups can collectively provide the necessary challenge and expert input.

The BSA also plans to make a separate detailed and considered submission before a deadline set by the CCG at the end of July. I would be happy to hear views from BSA members, particularly others who attended the engagement events – please email John.Day@wales.nhs.uk

View the Letter from Hearing Loss and Deafness Alliance to Norman Lamb

Hot off the press – The Chairman’s Summer 2014 Message.

Transforming BSA: progress means new challenges

The origins of international paediatric audiology can be traced to the death of a young man one hundred years ago. Ellis Llwyd Jones (1874-1918), son of a prominent businessman in the Manchester cotton industry, had been deaf since birth. Ellis insisted on joining the British army during World War One but was barred from active duty because of his deafness and, instead, worked in a canteen. In 1918 he caught a serious illness, possibly typhus, and was invalided back to Britain. He died in February of that year. He left no will when he died but his father, Sir James Jones, donated part his estate (around £4 million in today’s money) to the University of Manchester in order to: (1) establish the first university-based programme for teachers of the deaf, and (2) undertake research into childhood deafness.

In 1919, Irene Rosetta Goldsack was appointed as the first lecturer in deaf education. In 1920, Alexander William Gordon Ewing enrolled in her one-year Diploma programme. One assumes that Irene Goldsack and Alexander Ewing had much in common, both professionally and personally, because they married the following year. This was the start of a formidable partnership in the history of paediatric audiology and deaf education. Irene Ewing was awarded an OBE in 1947 and Alexander Ewing was knighted in 1958, both for their services to audiology and deaf education.

Download the Chairman message Summer 2014

Chairman’s Message – Summer 2014

Transforming BSA: progress means new challenges

The origins of international paediatric audiology can be traced to the death of a young man one hundred years ago. Ellis Llwyd Jones (1874-1918), son of a prominent businessman in the Manchester cotton industry, had been deaf since birth. Ellis insisted on joining the British army during World War One but was barred from active duty because of his deafness and, instead, worked in a canteen. In 1918 he caught a serious illness, possibly typhus, and was invalided back to Britain. He died in February of that year. He left no will when he died but his father, Sir James Jones, donated part his estate (around £4 million in today’s money) to the University of Manchester in order to: (1) establish the first university-based programme for teachers of the deaf, and (2) undertake research into childhood deafness.

In 1919, Irene Rosetta Goldsack was appointed as the first lecturer in deaf education. In 1920, Alexander William Gordon Ewing enrolled in her one-year Diploma programme. One assumes that Irene Goldsack and Alexander Ewing had much in common, both professionally and personally, because they married the following year. This was the start of a formidable partnership in the history of paediatric audiology and deaf education. Irene Ewing was awarded an OBE in 1947 and Alexander Ewing was knighted in 1958, both for their services to audiology and deaf education.

Download the Chairman message Summer 2014

BSA’s response to North Staffordshire Clinical Commissioning Group’s proposal to cut hearing aid services

The BSA is responding to proposals by the North Staffordshire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) that if implemented would see decommissioning of hearing aid services for patients with mild and moderate age-related hearing loss. The BSA recognises that the outcome may have repercussions beyond the local area. We are coordinating our questions and submissions to the CCG with other interested groups and have participated in a letter from Hearing Loss and Deafness Alliance to the relevant Minister Norman Lamb.

Council member John Day will be representing the BSA at an engagement event organised by the CCG on 2nd July at Leek, Staffordshire. We have already posed questions  in order to learn more about the decision making process and the evidence base that has led to this proposal. We will then make a detailed and considered submission before the deadline set by the CCG at the end of July.

Open for Public Consultation- Practice Guidance: Tinnitus in Children and Teenagers

The Practice Guidance: Tinnitus in Children and Teenagers is now open for consultation. You have invited to give feedback about the new Practice Guidance Document: Tinnitus in Children and Teenagers

Stop cuts to NHS Hearing Aids

North Staffordshire CCG are considering no longer providing hearing aids to adults with mild to moderate age-related hearing loss. Please help us by raising awareness and signing the petition below!

International Journal of Audiology

International Journal of Audiology, a high impact journal, with a wide international readership, is committed to furthering development of a scientifically robust evidence base for audiology. It aims to achieve this through publication of high-quality papers of relevance to the science and clinical practice of audiology and its component disciplines.

This is available for free to BSA Members CLICK HERE

Limited editions are available to non-members but specific editions can be purchased here

Audacity

Audacity, our membership magazine, formerly known as BSA News, promotes learning and knowledge, reflects the clinical, academic and research age in which we live and explores new ideas (Include link here to Audacity editions here).

It is available for free to BSA members as well as non-members (limited editions).

Specific editions can be purchases by non-members (include link to ‘contact us’ here).

BSA Annual Conference 2014 Registration & Booking Now Open

The fifth joint Annual, Clinical and Experimental Conference of the British Society of Audiology is to be held at the lovely Keele University campus for the second year running. From the 1st to the 3rd of September we plan to put on an innovative and exciting programme packed full of presentations, special sessions, and basic, translational and clinical posters and talks.

Key Speakers: Prof Corne Kros, Dr Trevor Cox, Dr Todd Ricketts

Contact: Dave Furness (d.n.furness@keele.ac.uk)


Click here for more information
Register here

Humanitarian Audiology: how the BSA can help

Here in the UK we have the great fortune of having not only arguably the best health service in the world but also a very well developed, high quality and generally well-resourced Audiology system. However, for much of the rest of the world, particularly in developing countries where overall resources available for healthcare are tiny in comparison, the picture is very different; ear care and Audiology is often very limited by both the funding available for it and the skills and training of the staff on the ground. For example, in Zambia, a country of 13 million people, there is only one audiologist. In Sierra Leone, a country of six million people, there are none.

In these countries there may also be huge problems with the prevalence of ear problems, hearing loss and deafness in children and the adult population with a great deal of unmet need for both ENT treatment and audiological provision.

There are a number of organisations that are doing amazing work in various parts of the world and the BSA has a strong commitment to supporting humanitarian Audiology of all kinds; indeed, many members of the society have given up their time to travel to distant places to help out and contribute, always finding the experience enormously rewarding and important. The table below summarises some of the organisations known to the BSA that are involved; anyone who is interested should have a good read of the websites, which give an insight into the varied and high quality projects that are going on. Some of the countries where this work takes place have suffered from multiple problems that make our life in this country seem exceptionally comfortable and safe. For example, All Ears Cambodia provides a unique medical service in a beautiful country that has been torn by years of warfare and where there is intractable poverty. By running outreach clinics in very difficult circumstances and ear health care education, the charity helps large numbers of Cambodians every ear. British audiologists can help by sending old hearing aids or other equipment that is no longer useful here but will be put to good use over there (see the charity’s website for more details).

Similarly, the International Nepal Fellowship is a Christian mission serving Nepali people; as well as helping large numbers of vulnerable people including those with varied disabilities, leprosy, TB and health problems, they support Ear Camps in remote areas of the country, often in very difficult conditions a very long way from what we are used to here in Britain. An article about a recent trip to Nepal by Jenny Griffin and Joy Rosenburg (supported by a BSA bursary) will be featured in the next edition of Audacity, which will give a fascinating in-depth description of the experience.

The Aud-m-ed Trust carries out a wide range of activities around the world, and as the name indicates, their work encompasses audiology, medical audiology and education in Audiology; although a small charity based in the UK, their achievements are many, including: A family centred workshop for teachers of deaf children in Ghana; a technician has been brought from Ghana for training in the UK; Journals/books/equipment have been sent to Kenya, Ghana, Malawi, Jordan and Russia; Hearing aids have been sent to Kenya and Iraq;a basic audiology unit set up in Nepal; a survey and rehabilitation project in China.

Tanzanear is a UK charity dedicated to helping deaf people in Tanzania lead richer and more fulfilling lives. Working closely with the Tanzania Society for the Deaf, they provide enormous help to the Buguruni School for the Deaf and also work with Umivita, a small organisation run by young deaf adults, which provides advocacy and support services to deaf people in Dar es Salaam.

Soundseekers (formerly known as the Commonwealth Society for the Deaf) will be familiar to many British audiologists and have been dedicated for many years to helping deaf and hearing-impaired people across the developing world. Sound Seekers used to be known mainly for providing mobile hearing health-care clinics (HARK! vehicles) but are now trying to work more deeply in fewer countries, including tele-audiology and targeted paediatric screening projects, and providing continuing professional development to in-country audiologists. Soundseekers have recently moved into a new office at the UCL Ear Institute in London- so are in the ’heart of the action’ when it comes to ear and hearing research and Audiology. Below is a call to all audiologists who are looking for an exciting opportunity to work in another part of the world and make a real difference- please read!

The BSA will continue to keep supporting the organisations described here, and promoting humanitarian audiology around the world is a key objective in the society’s Action Plan for the future.

Huw Cooper

Organisation Country Website Role
Tanzanear Tanzania http://www.tanzanear.org/home/index.htm Schools for deaf children; deaf advocacy
All ears Cambodia Cambodia www.allearscambodia.org Ear health care and audiology
Audmed trust Ghana, other countries in Africa and around the world www.audmed.org.uk Christian Mission
International Nepal Fellowship Nepal www.inf.org Ear camps
Sound-seekers Cameroon, Gambia, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, Zambia http://www.sound-seekers.org.uk/ Long-term audiological support – provision of training and equipment

Calling all would-be humanitarian Audiologists

Sound Seekers is a small, London-based charity with projects in eight developing countries, all in sub-Saharan Africa. Our work is dedicated to improving quality of life for deaf and hearing-impaired people, in particular by assisting Ministries of Health to establish or develop audiology infrastructure and capacity. In the countries where Sound Seekers works, audiology services are few and far between, and where they do exist they usually lack the necessary equipment and qualified staff. Our works aims to address these gaps through providing training opportunities and audiological equipment.

The number of fully qualified Audiologists in poor countries is pitiful. In Zambia, a country of 13 million people, there is only one. In Sierra Leone, a country of six million people, there are none. In several countries that we support, the only fully qualified Audiologists are working in the private sector. Although Sound Seekers supports candidates from developing countries to follow courses in audiology, at the moment we are limited to sponsoring participation in a one-year diploma in Clinical Audiology. Those who complete this course usually return to their home countries and are expected to hit the ground running and establish an audiology service from scratch.

This is where you come in!

  1. Are you looking for a challenge and can you spare at least two weeks*?
  2. Do you enjoy coaching and mentoring?
  3. Would you like to use your skills in a resource-poor setting, where little is known about what an Audiologist is or does?
  4. Are you keen to visit a new country and work with some fabulous people?

… then we would like to hear from you!

Sound Seekers is looking for audiology professionals to go to our project countries for a minimum of two weeks, to support staff on the ground that have received basic training in audiology and need help to establish or develop their service. If you are available immediately or in six months, please do email Emily Bell on projects@sound-seekers.org.uk and include a copy of your CV**.

*but the longer the better!

**If we can work out a suitable placement for you, Sound Seekers will help you raise funds towards your trip.

New BSA Website

Welcome to our new BSA Website! In line with the dynamic and forward-thinking work of the BSA, we decided that the time has come to have a leading website that is the first port of call for Audiology.

Some of the key elements include:

You can Facebook and Tweet us – or reach us in more traditional ways. We are there for you – on your ipad, notebook or computer, in a format that is quick and easy to access.

BSA Journal Club Revival

The recent journal club on Adult Hearing Screening, organised by Jane Wild and Helen Henshaw, held at Nottingham Hearing Biomedical Research Unit (15th May) has inspired further journal clubs. The 2 1/2 hour session was a wonderful mix of lively and enthusiastic discussion, insights and learning, with papers led by Cherilee Rutherford, Lorraine Gailey and John Day.

The agenda will be repeated at the BSA Annual Conference at Keele in September- so if you want to take part, book early – places are limited. The next journal club subject will be on Dementia and Hearing Loss, and we plan to hold this hot topic event in three different UK locations toward the end of the year.

Chairman’s Message Spring 2014

UK and BSA: what has held each of them together?

On 18 September 2014, a relatively small proportion of the population of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (British citizens over the age of 16 years who are resident in Scotland) can vote in the Scottish referendum on the question: ‘Should Scotland be an independent country?’ A minority of the people of Scotland (less than 33%) are in favour of independence. Perhaps the Scottish government is relying on a combination of the 700th anniversary of the Battle of Bannockburn (where Robert the Bruce routed a larger English army), along with hosting the Commonwealth Games and the Ryder Cup golf tournament, to generate a surge of nationalism and self-efficacy into the Scots. As Linda Colley points out in her recent essays on the United Kingdom, ‘All countries are synthetic and imperfect creations and subject to change’ (Colley, 2014).

The BSA is a composite organisation and also subject to change. Unlike the UK, (a state composed of four nations), the constituent parts of BSA are not ethnic, political, religious or geographical, but there are real differences nevertheless. Compare, for example, the characteristics and culture of members who: (i) function within an educational, health or research setting; (ii) operate within the NHS or independent sector; (iii) are based within the UK or overseas. Therefore, what binds the BSA together?

Download the Chairman’s message – Spring 2014

Chairman’s Message Winter 2013

Connect, communicate and contribute

Participants at the 2013 annual conference had the opportunity to hear my presentation on ‘BSA Update: turning words into actions’ (https://connect.sonova.com/p5ngs0c7ggf/). This allowed me to summarise our strategic aims, our action plan and to highlight our activities for the coming year (some already completed, some in progress, and others yet to commence).

Running through all areas of our work are cross-cutting activities including ‘engagement’. There has been a tendency for BSA to provide information but not actively communicate. In this regard, we have been weighed, measured and found wanting. We are actively addressing this weakness with a variety of innovations.

Download the Chairman’s message Winter 2013

Chairman’s Message July 2013

BSA and you: let’s get engaged

Politicians and journalists are apt to use the term ‘It is not a given’ when they mean we should not take something for granted. So let’s cut to the chase: do we take BSA for granted? Do we assume that BSA will always be part of the fabric of UK audiology? What if there was no BSA? What if no:

  1. annual conference or ‘Lunch and Learn’ seminars?
  2. Special Interest Groups?
  3. bursaries or funding for applied research?
  4. recommended procedures, clinical guidance or position statements?
  5. International Journal of Audiology or BSA News (soon to be re-launched as Audacity)?
  6. link with the International Society of Audiology or the European Federation of Audiology Societies?
  7. learned society providing links between knowledge, learning, service and impact?
  8. independent advice for stakeholders?

Download the Chairman’s Message

Chairman’s Message Spring 2013

Carried by the current or moving with purpose?

Since sharing my first Chairman s message (BSA: omnipotent or impotent?) with you, there has been one meeting of Council, the governing body of the Society. The Trustees and Council Advisors used the occasion to discuss the fresh direction of the Society. The resources of the Society are relatively small and this has the potential to stifle creativity and prevent successful execution of strategic plans. It is all too easy to become preoccupied with averting disasters and reducing decline: the ‘not on my watch’ syndrome. Whilst these are worthy causes, they can distract our attention and hinder strategic decision making.

Figure 1 shows an analogy I have adapted from Abraham Maslow’s well known, but not universally accepted, hierarchy of needs (Maslow, 1943). What we ‘seek to avoid’ and what we ‘seek to achieve’ are at opposite ends of the pyramid. So, whilst acknowledging that resources are required to keep the foundations of the Society strong, there is unanimous agreement from Trustees, and Council Advisors, that we should concentrate on ‘making a difference’.

Download Chairman’s Message  – Spring 2013

Chairman’s Message Oct 2012

British Society of Audiology: omnipotent or impotent?

I am privileged to be your new chairman. The duration of office from vice- to past-chairman is six years; however, my period of office as chairman lasts a mere two years. It is important to hit the road running or, adapting the words of author Nicholson Baker, ‘this could be a short stick with two ends and not much middle’ (Baker, 2012). Few of us have known a career in UK audiology, or cognate discipline, without the presence of the British Society of Audiology (BSA), now 45 years old. It pervades our daily lives. For many, BSA is a cornerstone of the profession/discipline (see later for examples of impact). At the other extreme, there is a perception by some non-members (perhaps shared by some members) that BSA has served its time and is largely ineffective. This is a timely opportunity, as incoming chairman, to discuss this polarised view of BSA: omnipotent or impotent?

Download the Chairman’s message Munro Oct 2012 FINAL