Telecare is an umbrella term used to describe the providing of services from a distance by use of modern telecommunication systems including wireless. Telecare is being used successfully in almost every health specialty area today (Tele-Healthcare).
There are many benefits for the consumer receiving their hearing aid services through the practice of TeleHearing Healthcare or also known as Tele-Audiology.
TeleHearing Healthcare or Tele-Audiology
There are many ways TeleHearing Healthcare benefits the consumer. It reduces barriers for hearing impaired individuals residing in underserved or rural areas or for people who are not able to drive anymore to receive care. It also reduces travel and wait times for all consumers. Today’s hearing aid users appreciate the convenience of using modern communication tools to receive prompt support whenever it best fits into their schedule or routine.
Today’s world is one of convenience, we can have our groceries delivered to our home, our banking and bill paying are done from our living rooms, and we can arrange for any number of needed personal services to come to us. For millions of people, social media is the preferred means of personal communication. Face-to-face electronic conversations (Facetime, Duo, Skype, Hangouts) have become as routine as traditional face-to-face in-person meetings.
Tele-audiology allows for communication, using audio and video between client and hearing care provider, each at different locations. The use of this technology dramatically reduces cost, increases efficiency, and speed in the providing of hearing care services. Changing how patients are evaluated from the traditional methods of in-person to remote care also improves access for those living in areas where hearing services are not available or for whom a trip to a clinic represents a major challenge or hardship due to disability.
TeleHearing Healthcare also provides hearing aid users with the opportunity to be more involved in the hearing aid fitting process. This involvement strengthens commitment and raises the acceptance of new devices and customer satisfaction.
In general, the audiology profession has been slow to accept and develop this system of service delivery. Hearing Care Professionals also benefit from TeleHearing Healthcare as we can reach more consumers and deliver better patient-centered support and care. Today’s technological advancements have opened the doors for the creative development of the online delivery of hearing care services through advanced communication and video systems.
Overall, TeleHearing Healthcare benefits both the consumer and the hearing care professional. Both will save time and gain efficiency. And most importantly, TeleHearing Healthcare is an effective method to strengthen their relationship, helping turn persons with hearing loss into satisfied hearing aid customers.
One company, HearSource, in particular, has embraced the advance of TeleHearing Healthcare. Since 1997, HearSource has been providing hearing aids, repairs, supplies, and other services directly to consumers utilizing their online website. They have been involved in the development of the products and systems utilized specifically for the online delivery of hearing care services since the beginning. I think we have all the bases covered in providing the highest levels of hearing aid technologies, services, and support to our customers anywhere in the hearing aid industry.
The hearing industry seems to be catching on to TeleHearing Healthcare. All of the major hearing aid manufacturers now offer their latest and best hearing aid products that are internet programmable or adjustable. They also have developed smartphone apps that allow the consumer to make minor adjustments to hearing instruments themselves. Although there are still a few manufacturers that don’t allow the sale of their products from online vendors. I am sure that these reluctant hearing aid manufacturers are concerned about the quality of care and support that their customers will receive from online hearing aid dealers.
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