Patients and their Psychosocial Concerns
Poost-Foroosh, Jennings, and colleagues (2011) reported eight key factors occurring between the patient and Audiologist that may influence the decision to purchase hearing aids:
An understanding of and provision for patient needs
Patient-centered traits and actions
Acknowledgement of the patient as an individual
Imposition of undue pressure and discomfort
Presentation of device information by the clinician
Support of choices and shared decision-making
Ekberg, Grenness, and Hickson (2014) states that “despite technological advances, psychosocial concerns of adults with hearing impairment may have a large impact on their audiological help-seeking and rehabilitation.” It has been known for many years that the diagnosis of hearing impairment creates emotional reactions including fear, worry, sadness and disappointment.
The authors examined video-recordings from 63 consultations with 26 different audiologists in Australia. In almost half of the recordings, when patients expressed concerns about hearing aids, their concerns were psychosocial in nature. More importantly, the response from the audiologist did not “align” with the psychosocial nature of the concern raised by the patient. In other words, the patient’s concerns were not addressed or validated. Ekberg, Grenness, and Hickson conclude in their studies that the adults’ psychosocial concerns regarding hearing aids may not always be sufficiently addressed, which creates a greater emphasis on personal adjustment counseling within the audiology industry, which could result in improved outcomes.
Ekberg K, Grenness C, Hickson L. (2014) Addressing Patient’s Psychosocial Concerns Regarding Hearing Aids Within Audiology Appointments for Older Adults. American Journal of Audiology 23:337-350.
At Oklahoma Hearing Center, each of our audiologists are especially trained to ask questions of their patients, learning personal habits, hobbies and priorities so that as all the different hearing aids are considered for patients with hearing loss, all these things are important factors in choosing the right hearing aid for each individual patient.
That is why our company feels their mission is “Before we help you hear, we listen” .