Parents’ experiences with pediatric hearing aids
As audiologists, we would love to hear a parent say, “Our recent set of hearing aids with integrated FM was fully paid for by health insurance without a fight.” Unfortunately, this experience is not typical. Even though more families have access to insurance funding for hearing aids, it is often inadequate.
Today children are routinely identified with hearing loss shortly after birth and have opportunities to access sound using advanced technology within the first few months of life. Once a child is given access to sound, it takes the collaboration of the parents, audiologist, speech-language pathologist, and educator to help that child reach his or her maximum potential. Paired with early intervention, early access to sound has resulted in improved speech, language, and developmental outcomes for children with hearing loss (Holt & Svirsky, 2008; Nicholas & Geers, 2006).
To understand parent experiences more thoroughly, we surveyed parents (n=333) and asked for their valuable insights in written comments (Muñoz, Blaiser, & Barwick, in press). Three themes emerged from these comments: cost, retention, and daily management.
Barwick, K., Muñoz, K., & Blaiser, K. (October, 2012). Parents’ experiences with pediatric hearing aids, ASHA Leader, 17(12), 5-6