Westminster Debate on Cochlear Implants – 24 March 2017
Jim Fritzpatrick, Chair of APPG on Deafness at Westminster, posed questions to the Under Secretary of Sate for Health, David Mowat in an adjurnment debate on the provision of CIs.
Mr Fritzpatrick had been briefed by Brian Lamb, Chair of ACIAG, by a comprehensive paper on the low provision of adult CIs due to the stringency of the NICE criteria and that these were in need of serious revision.
The Minister stated that Parliamnet was extremely keen to it comes to the right answer in a process where there is an element of age discrimination in the lack of provision to elderly people by the commissioners.
We will make sure that the fact that cochlear implants can make such a radical difference to people’s lives is emphasised with GPs as part of the process.”
Ambassador Melanie Hewitt stars on Videos about Cochlear Implants – 7 March 2017

Melanie is featured in a series of videos published on YouTube by the Auditory Implant Service, Southampton.
Five really useful videos, with sub titles, on the benefits of cochlear implants and experiences of our Ambassador and other users.
See them on the links at the end of Melanie’s own page.

Commisioning Services for Hearing Loss – 3 March 2017

To mark World Hearing Day, the NHS held a major conference in London to launch a report on Commissioning Services for People with Hearing Loss which can be seen here.
The report sets out a Framework for Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) to implement the objectives and reccomendations of the Governments Action Plan on Hearing Loss.
Fiona Carrager, Deputy Chief Scientific Officer NHS England who led the conference stated that an update on progress in this important agenda would be made within the next 12 months.

International Cochlear Implant Day & WHO World Hearing Day – 17 Febrary 2017

In celebration of these important events , already listed on the Events page, a comprehensive document has been released setting out the significance of deafness today, its impact upon society and the economics of non treatment versus the the benefits and value of cochlear implant treatment. It has been produced by the Adult Cochlear Implant Action Group of which NCIUA is a committed and active partner.
The full statement can be seen here.

BBC Radio Publicity – 14 Feb 2017
Our NCIUA Ambassador, Melanie Hewit, featured in a BBC Cambridge and Radio 5 Live interview as part of the Naked Scientist series.It will be repeated on ABC Australia!
The full programme can be seen at: https://www.thenakedscientists.com/podcasts/naked-scientists/meteorites-space-invaders.
Scroll down to entry 22.28
Cochlear Implant Candidacy- Jan 2017
BCIG have published a consultation questionaire to seek a consolidation of modern views on the most appropiate assessment criteria for implantation.
All views are welcome and the questionnaire can be completed at http://www.cicandidacy.co.uk/.  End date 31 Jan 2017
Turn and Ear to Hear
Intriging and useful research results from a study by Jacques Grange at Cardiff about the problems of listening in noise. See here for the full details.

Media Publicity for Cochlear Implants – November 2016

TV Channel 4 broadcast a programme – Breaking The Silence- on 22 Nov in which several adult people were shown undergoing their ‘Switch On’ and their reactions to this very emotional expererience. It was unique in that the audiologists involved are all members of the British Cochlear Implant Group, the NHS professionals who work at the implant centres. The programme can be seen at;   http://www.channel4.com/programmes/breaking-the-silence-live

Media Publicity for Cochlear Implants – April 2016

A TV programme “What would be your Miracle” was shown by ITV at 9 pm on Thursday 28 April which featured a mature lady receiving a cochlear implant and of her successful outcome. This life transforming procedure was her miracle and she was overwhelmed with the result. The first of a 3 part series the second programme on 5 May will feature a young girl receiving a cochlear implant.

New Drug Trial for Cochlear Implant UsersApril 2016

A UK based company called Autifony Therapeutics is developing a drug, AUT00063, which modulates the channels that are critical to the function of the neural circuits involved in central auditory processing. It is thought that by increasing the precision and timing of neural firing (allowing neurons to “quickfire”), AUT00063 will enhance central auditory performance, and in particular, temporal resolution.  Autifony is conducting a pilot evaluation of the benefits of AUT00063 on some aspects of central auditory processing for CI users.

Full details of this drug trial can be seen here.

Press ReleaseFeb 2016
“The National Cochlear Implant Users Association (NCIUA) is pleased to announce the appointment of Deaf Olympics athlete Melanie Jewett as our official ambassador. Melanie won the bronze medal in the marathon at the 2013 Deaf Olympics and remains in training. Melanie has a cochlear implant and has benefitted enormously from this life transforming treatment for severe/profoundly deaf people. She has never let her deafness hold her back – she holds a responsible job in IBM and is fully engaged in the normal hearing world. Melanie will help us bring awareness and information to the outside world about the huge benefits of cochlear implantation and also provide encouragement for and advice to potential and new cochlear implant users.”

 

 

 

Nigel Williams, Chairman of NCIUA, is named  as the 412th Point of Light by David Cameron, Prime Minister  for supporting deaf adultsJan 2016.

Points of Light are outstanding individual volunteers – people who are making a change in their community. Every week day the Prime Minister recognises an inspirational volunteer with the Daily Point of Light award.

A Cardiff volunteer who has supported deaf adults both emotionally and practically through establishing support networks and rehabilitation programmes. Nigel Williams, 59, was inspired to support adults with hearing loss and their families after becoming deaf at the age of 16, due to meningitis. Nigel believed that more could be done to assist the hearing impaired and wanted to use his personal experiences to help adults cope with the impact of hearing loss.

Nigel is also Chairman of Hearing Link, a leading UK charity tailored purely to helping adults and their families cope both emotionally and practically through a support network of volunteers. Nigel has volunteered at Hearing Link for over 12 years and, under his steer as chairman, the charity has grown and developed ways of helping all those who rely on them. Hearing Link offers a wide range of services including a Self Management Programme and a week long Rehabilitation Programme where participants receive practical support in dealing with hearing loss delivered by volunteers who themselves have experience of living with hearing loss. In addition to these programmes Hearing Link provide one to one community sessions and an online support forum supported by volunteers.

Nigel’s work has led to many users of the charity becoming volunteers themselves and giving back to others. Nigel is also the Chairman of the association that represents people who rely on cochlear implants, electronic devices that replace the function of the damaged inner ear allowing people to hear. The National Cochlear Implant Users Association works to improve awareness of the support that is available for people needing the implants. As Chairman, Nigel set up effective partnerships with support groups, including with the three UK’s most influential charities for deafness. Together they have changed the standard treatment for deaf adults in the UK, raised awareness and given evidence to government to ensure that cochlear implants are now regarded as a standard method of treatment when an adult becomes deaf, regardless of cost.

Prime Minister David Cameron said:

“By bringing together two of the biggest charities working with deaf adults in the UK, Nigel has made a huge difference to the services and support available to them. He has also played an important role in making sure the guidance given to the NHS on treatment for deaf adults offers them the highest standard of care. I am delighted to recognise Nigel as the UK’s 412th Point of Light.”

Nigel Williams said:

“I am surprised and thrilled to receive this award which I hope will encourage everyone who is dealing with hearing loss, which often impacts on far more than your ability to hear. The consequences of hearing loss often affects a person’s confidence and self-esteem and through practical support from people who live with hearing loss themselves people soon see that this need not be a barrier to leading a full and rewarding life. It’s a privilege to work with an organisation such as Hearing Link and I am grateful to everyone involved who provide so much help and support to others.”

See original page at https://www.pointsoflight.gov.uk/supporting-deaf-adults