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Ensuring the best possible hearing aid supply for hearing impaired people

Motivation

A social evening in a restaurant, a big family party or a trip to the city festival: Who doesn't know it, conversations in noisy environments are perceived as more strenuous than in a quiet environment. The problem of so-called "hearing strain" gets worse the more problems we have with our hearing, i.e. the more severe the hearing loss. Hearing aids are supposed to help reduce the hearing effort for individually. But do they do this at all? Good measurement methods are needed to verify this.

Optimal fitting of hearing impaired people with hearing aids or cochlear implants (CI) poses immense challenges for hearing care professionals and ENT physicians. Especially the subjective benefit assessment of the hearing systems in acoustically demanding everyday situations is a problem.

Target

With the measurement method "ACALES" (Adaptive CAtegorical Listening Effort Scaling), HörTech has developed a method for measuring subjectively perceived listening effort, which has already been evaluated and used in scientific studies. The aim of the INNO-KOM project, which started on July 1, is to transfer the measurement procedure into a marketable application for hearing care professionals and clinics in order to provide reliable results on the different perception of hearing effort with different hearing systems and thus ensure the best possible care for hearing impaired people.

"Although numerous studies have addressed the issue of hearing effort at the scientific level, there is currently no simple tool that hearing care professionals or clinicians can use to provide their clients with hearing aid or CI fittings that take into account hearing effort as well as speech intelligibility. This is where our process comes in," explains Melanie Krüger, product manager at Hörzentrum Oldenburg gGmbH.

Funding measure The Innovation Competence INNO-KOM funding program supports the innovative performance of non-profit external industrial research institutions in order to sustainably strengthen the innovative power of structurally weak regions in Germany. Since 2009, the predecessor program INNO-KOM-East focused on non-profit external research institutions in Eastern Germany. On January 1, 2017, the successful model was expanded to structurally weak regions throughout Germany under the new name INNO-KOM.

Project duration

July 2019 - Feb 2021

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