Can you get Phonak Roger free??

Can you get Phonak Roger free?? The answer is found in The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA). If you’re employed, the answer is very likely YES. The ADA requires employers to provide reasonable accommodations to qualified employees with disabilities unless such accommodation would pose and undue hardship. So what should you do? The most effective plan to get your Roger system compensated is to start with an accommodation request letter. We recommend working together with your hearing care professional to fill out some details – here’s what you should include in your letter:   Date: Name: Address:   Employer’s Name: Employer’s Address: Dear (e.g. supervisor, manager, human resources, personnel): Identify yourself as a person with a hearing loss State that you are requesting accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (or the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 if you’re a Federal employee) Identify your specific problematic job tasks (hearing in meetings, phone, presentations, sales calls etc.) Refer to attached, current audiological results (include Speech in Noise testing if possible) Identify your accommodation idea (take this opportunity to also describe your hearing care professionals Roger system recommendation – this should be echoed on the audiological exam results) Request your employer’s accommodation ideas Ask that the employer respond to your request in a reasonable amount of time   Sincerely, Signature Printed name   After you have submitted this letter to your human resources or manager, an in person discussion on what technology will be best should follow. This is your opportunity to reinforce how Phonak Roger is the only choice for your hearing and communication needs. We understand that questions might arise from your company. What is... read more

Opinion piece – are note takers and tutors enough?

While I am certainly biased towards the power of Phonak Roger, there are other accommodations for hard of hearing students as well. Today I’d like to examine note takers and peer tutoring. While these accommodations will be a solution for some – do we do students a disservice if they are the only means we provide?   When considering alternatives like note taking, tutoring and peer support as a main means of accommodation, I can’t help but feel that these are incredibly non-inclusive for the student, and leads to potential educational or social isolation. Relying solely on these means restricts student interaction with the professor and their peers in class. What motivation would a student have to attend class and be actively engaged if someone else is doing the listening for them (assuming a degree of hearing that permits ALD use) – or if a tutor regurgitates the information later? My opinion is that reliance on note taking and tutoring alone is far too passive of an approach that doesn’t enable a genuine learning experience. Instead, they should serve more in a supplemental role. Furthermore, note taking and tutoring don’t account for group discussion and classroom interaction scenarios which increasingly represent the university classroom. Hour long droning professor to student lectures are outdated and rarely the sole format of today’s university environment. More commonly now, there is class discussion and interaction, even within traditional lecture sections. Professors will also show digital media, like a YouTube video, to supplement their material as well.  How can a tutor or note taker aide effectively in these scenarios? If we consider most university budgets are tight for accommodations – that must be the reason note takers and tutoring are... read more

Captioning with the Roger Pen

The Roger Pen is an incredible piece of technology. If you’ve kept up with any of my previous entries you already know it is the unquestioned leader in providing speech understanding over distance and noise, 54% better than any competitor. In addition, larger networks of microphones can easily be created to capture multiple speakers. Pair this with the ability to record meetings and lectures alongside your iOS device, and you have a powerhouse tool. But what else – can we push the Roger Pen further? What about captioning? I set out to see if I could replicate my successes recording with the Roger Pen in the captioning realm, and the results are in:     The simplest method involves recruiting the Bluetooth functionality of the Roger Pen paired with the power of an iOS based device (smartphone or tablet) plus a free application called “Dictation – Talk to Text”. From our research at Phonak Worklife we know that captioning services can be extremely costly. While captioning via Roger might not be the best solution for every individual, for many it will be a suitable option and the cost savings are immense. Drop us a line at: worklife@phonak.com if you’d like to experience this incredible versatility in the classroom or at work.... read more

Record with Roger?

The Roger Pen is best known for its incredible ability to improve sound clarity over distance and background noise amongst other game changing features… Yet time and time again I am asked, “Can I record with the Roger Pen?” The answer is: YES   The simplest method involves recruiting the Bluetooth functionality of the Roger Pen paired with the power of the modern smart phone, tablet or computer. * I can bet this recording functionality would come in handy for a sleepy college student in lecture or stressed out business professional in a meeting. *Recording to a cellular/tablet device only tested with iOS operating system. Drop us a line at: worklife@phonak.com if you’d like to experience this incredible versatility in the classroom or at... read more
Phonak Introduces the Roger Table Microphone

Phonak Introduces the Roger Table Microphone

In past entries we spoke about the Phonak Roger Pen. In April Phonak added to their line-up of Roger wireless devices, adding the Roger Table Microphone (RTM). The RTM is a dedicated solution for large group situations and features: Sound processing tailored for meetings Multi-talker network – connect with several RTMs or other Roger microphones in the Roger Work Life portfolio Range – 20 meters to receiver Compatibility – with virtually every hearing aid and CI there is a compatible Roger receiver Battery life – 20 hours Remote control – direct your listening experience   Listen below!    ... read more
Is Roger right for me?

Is Roger right for me?

If you are having trouble hearing at work or school, it can be pretty frustrating to find answers. It is likely you know that additional help is needed…especially if you already have a hearing aid. Phonak Roger wireless systems can be an answer to your frustrations. If your audiologist hasn’t already brought up Roger as an option, it’s time to ask.   If you have one or more of the following Roger can help: 1. Severe to profound hearing loss 2. Unilateral hearing loss (hearing loss in one ear) 3. Cochlear Implant or Bone Anchored Hearing Aid user 4. Poor word discrimination results 5. Poor Signal to Noise test results Example: QuickSIN test results greater than or equal to 15 dB SNR loss. (Ask your audiologist to perform this test!)... read more
Managing Hearing Loss at Work – part 2

Managing Hearing Loss at Work – part 2

What is it truly like managing in the workplace with a hearing loss? Sometimes the best way to gain perspective is to go straight to the source! Today I share with you an  blog entry from Hear2Work. Specifically, a first hand account of managing hearing loss in the workplace. It is our intent that feedback like this can be a tool to help you plan better for your own communication success at work.   Interview with Hilary – “Company Director”   Share your experience with hearing loss in the workplace in the comments!   Check out: Hear2Work  for more great... read more
Managing Hearing Loss at Work – part 1

Managing Hearing Loss at Work – part 1

Working with a hearing loss presents a plethora of daily challenges. There’s group meetings, conference calls, presentations, the lunch room, the phone….here are some ideas to conquer your work day. What strategies would you add to the list? 10 Tips for Success Courtesy of AARP and Matt... read more
The Talented FM:  Broaden your accommodations for ASD & ADHD

The Talented FM: Broaden your accommodations for ASD & ADHD

Must I have a hearing loss to benefit from an FM system? The answer to this question increasingly NO! An FM system is a truly talented device, and its uses are far and wide. In previous entries we introduced the idea that individuals with auditory processing disorders could gain valuable speech understanding (especially in noise), reduce listening strain, and increase focus with the aid of an FM system. Research by Schafer and others** investigated the efficacy of using an FM system with individuals that have autism spectrum disorder (ASD) or attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). When compared to typically functioning peers, those with ASD and ADHD had poorer than average speech recognition in noise. Summarized below are the findings/benefits of providing FM to those with ASD or ADHD: 1. with FM utilized:  average speech recognition in noise comparable to normally functioning peers 2. with FM utilized: increase of on task behavior 3. with FM utilized: significant improvement in average listening behavior   If you would like to read the research in its entirety or have questions email me at: bill.bielski@phonak.com   **Personal FM systems for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and/or attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD): an initial investigation.  ... read more
Auditory Processing Disorders and FM Systems

Auditory Processing Disorders and FM Systems

For many years FM systems were used primarily for individuals that had a hearing impairment. In recent years, research has shown how an FM system can lend benefit to individuals with other difficulties, for example, auditory processing disorder (APD). A study by Johnston and others entitled, ” Multiple benefits of personal FM system use by children with auditory processing disorder (APD)”, documented these findings. Among the results of FM use were:  speech perception improvement in noisy classroom environment  significant academic and psycho-social benefits  after prolonged FM use, even unaided (no FM device) speech-perception performance was improved in the children with APD, suggesting the possibility of fundamentally enhanced auditory system function     If you’d like to read the findings in their entirety, or have another question, send me an email at: bill.bielski@phonak.com... read more