In November 2016, Phonak first introduced the Audiology Blog here on Phonakpro.com. It was intended to feature blog posts on the latest topics in audiological research, scientific evidence and clinical best practice and was envisioned to give hearing care professionals the opportunity to interact with experts from around the world. Not only was I fortunate enough to attend Phonak’s 5th European Pediatric conference that year, but I was also super lucky to have the inaugural byline on the audiology blog describing the success of the event.
Through the blog, I’ve personally been able to share my volunteer experience in Vietnam, the lessons I’ve learned about managing children with unilateral hearing loss and just how important it is for children to wear their hearing technology, even when life gets a little wet! I’ve been able to engage with clinicians who have comments and questions or are just looking for a little more information on these topics. And I have also had the pleasure to watch the audiology blog expand and grow over the years with articles from more than 100 different authors, some of those very close friends and colleagues within Phonak as well as many experts and leaders across the field of hearing healthcare worldwide.
Here are highlights of what the Blog has offered:
Guidance on best practice
The Audiology Blog has been an easily accessible resource for quick information, education and training for clinicians on audiological best practice in areas like Pediatrics (37 articles) and Family-Centered Care (34 articles). Two of my favorite articles that support both of these is ‘Improving patient relationships by giving up the driver’s seat’, an informative article written by Andrea Dunn about integrating the Pediatric Question Prompt List to help families ask questions and help guide counseling and ‘Supporting families on their hearing journey’ by Janet DesGeorges, the Executive Director of Hands & Voices.
Interviews with experts in the industry
Just last year, a new interview series, called Theory to Practice was introduced on the blog to highlight pioneers in the field who are paving the way and literally turning research and theory into everyday clinical practice. A couple of excellent examples include ‘Time savings, convenience and reduced travel costs – all with eAudiology’ is a great article by Gina Angley from Vanderbilt University Medical Center that focuses on best practices to implementing distance support in the clinic and ‘Hearing loss and cognition: hearing well is thinking well’ by Julia Sarant, Associate Professor at the University of Melbourne in Australia. Her work is looking at whether treatment of hearing loss in older adults can actually delay the onset of cognitive decline and the findings could really change the way we talk about hearing loss and amplification with patients.
Support during the pandemic
So, here we are at the end of 2020 – truly an incredible year. When COVID-19 caused unexpected and unavoidable disruptions to everyday life around the globe and forced clinics to close or find alternative methods of providing hearing healthcare, the Phonak Audiology Blog was a valued resource for continued support. With weekly articles focusing on things like staying in contact with clients and continuing your team’s development during clinic closures or ultimately getting back to business in the new normal of the ongoing pandemic, we saw page views increase by 78 percent in April. Of course COVID-19 related articles continue to be published as new evidence and resources are made available. A recent article by David Taylor, from the Phonak Audiology Research Center (PARC) summarizes what clinicians can do to help clients communicate during COVID-19 including recommendations for remote microphones and a manual mask program.
Updates on new innovations
And if you are looking for updates on the latest innovations, like Phonak’s rechargeable technology check-out a fan favorite: ‘Charging hearing aids overnight – wishful thinking?’ by Davina Omisore or ‘Hearing on the go’ by Solveig Christina Voss, introducing Motion Sensor Hearing available in the new Audéo Paradise platform. The Phonak Audiology blog is not only an excellent resource for the latest updates and relevant hot topics, but it also houses a searchable library of information you can access in bite size, 5 minute reads with further links to learn more.
What’s next? – 2 new series!
As we move towards 2021, Phonak has big plans to grow the Audiology blog and publish more short and easy-to-digest articles each week with 2 new series planned that focus on promoting best practice for working with adults who have severe and profound hearing loss and helping clinicians communicate the importance of hearing well for one’s social-emotional, cognitive and physical well-being.
If you aren’t already a subscriber to this Audiology blog, let me invite you to join the thousands of hearing care professionals already getting access the latest articles as soon as they are published and hot off the press. It’s easy, just click here to subscribe and you will receive a notification each week overviewing the latest topics. Additionally, we’d love to hear from you. If you have a topic you’d like to see covered in a blog article, feel free to comment below.