FCC to Propose Rules for Increased Access to Wireless Technology

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Thursday, November 13, 2015
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Feature Story 

FCC to Propose Rules for Increased Access to Wireless Technology

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) announced last week a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) which would strengthen accessibility for people with hearing loss by expanding the scope of its hearing aid compatibility requirements to all forms of voice communication. If adopted, this action would cover emerging technologies such as Wi-Fi calling and VoLTE (Voice over Long-Term Evolution) as well as those that may develop in the future.

Hearing technology compatibility had long been an issue for people with hearing loss due to interference between phones and hearing technology. Until now, regulations have been focused on handsets used with traditional cellular networks and have required accessibility for only a fraction of devices on the market.

"Individuals with hearing loss should not be relegated to specific services based on how such services are provided and deserve to have the same mobile communications options as other consumers," noted FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler in a recent blog post.

Click here to read the NPRM and here for all FCC background materials related to hearing technology compatibility. Submit comments today to help ensure full compatibility with hearing technology!

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Submit Proposals Now for 2016 AG Bell Convention

The November 20 deadline is quickly approaching to submit proposals for the 2016 AG Bell Convention on June 30 - July 3! With a theme of Hear in Denver: Accelerating Progress, Advancing Opportunity! the call for pre-convention workshops, concurrent sessions and poster presentations is now open! Content for submissions must present evidence-based research, practice or information pertaining to one or more of the nine Listening and Spoken Language Specialist (LSLS®) domains of knowledge and the convention's five learning tracks: 

  • Educational, Therapeutic and Clinical Management 
  • Professional Practice 
  • Living with Hearing Loss 
  • Communication 
  • Technology

We are especially looking for presentations that incorporate a creative and/or innovative mix of delivery formats such as interactive discussion, panels or small work groups. Click here to learn more about submitting a proposal for pre-convention workshops, concurrent sessions and/or posters! Hurry - the deadline to submit your proposal is Nov. 20!

Cochlear Implant and Hearing Aid Research Study

The Cochlear Implant and Hearing Aid Lab at Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) is looking for children ages 6-8 to take part in a hearing research study. The goal is to study how children combine sounds between the two ears, and how this may explain some of the variability in speech and music perception abilities for children with hearing loss. Children must have hearing loss, and use one of the following device combinations to participate: hearing aids in both ears; a hearing aid in one ear and a cochlear implant in the other ear; or cochlear implants in both ears. Click here for more information about this research or contact the lab director, Lina Reiss ([email protected] or 503-494-5868).

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FDA Allows Marketing of New Laser-based Hearing Aid

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has announced that it is allowing the marketing of a new hearing aid technology that uses a laser diode and direct vibration of the eardrum to amplify sound. Click here to learn more.

Study: Hearing Aids Lead to Better Outcomes for Children with Hearing Loss

Hearing aids can make a big difference for children's language, scholastic and social development, according to a new study published in the journal Ear and Hearing. Click here to read more.

Meet the 2016 Convention Chair!

AG Bell is thrilled to introduce Tamala S. Bradham, Ph.D., CCC-A, as the 2016 AG Bell Convention chair. In a recent interview, she tells us about her work in the field of hearing loss and her vision for AG Bell's flagship biannual gathering. Click here to read the full interview

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