Bionic Ear Association

27 08 2010

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The Bionic Ear Association (BEA) is brought to you by Advanced Bionics (AB), a global leader in the development and manfuacture of Cochlear Implants. The BEA is a support network dedicated to improving the quality of life of individuals with severe-to-profound hearing loss by providing valuable information, education, awareness and guidance on cochlear implants.

If you are based in the UK and are interested in cochlear implants, and would like to contact an AB user in the UK, you can connect to one of AB’s dedicated Mentors at BIONIC EAR ASSOCIATION.

You can also join BEA on Facebook to stay connected.

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3 responses

30 08 2010
Dan Schwartz, Editor, The Hearing Blog

Tina is quite right about the Bionic Ear Association and their volunteer mentor program. Here is the link for the United States & Canada counterpart:
http://www.BionicEar.com

Whether you go to the North American or UK website, you’ll see on the right of the page a blue box that says Start a conversation — Go ahead and click it. For the United Kingdom, you’ll see two pages, while for North America you’ll see four pages. Go through the biographies and see if you identify with someone listed: Schoolteacher, musician, engineer, parent of a deaf child, and so forth.

When you choose a Mentor, you’ll be prompted to register; and within a day or two both the mentor and regional Patient Coordinator will be in touch.

There are a few minor differences between the British and American BEA programs that are worth pointing out, though:

1a) The BEA Mentor program in the US has about 1800 members who have undergone training: Some have dropped out over time; many others have asked that their names not be on the CTM (Connect To Mentor) web pages due to time constraints. However, the regional Patient Coordinators have many others that are not listed on the website, and upon request s/he will connect you with someone who is “on your wavelength;”

1b) The new UK BEA Mentor program only had 17 in the initial class; and should be ready for a second class of trainees. And Yes, Tina, you are Number One on the invitee list for the next class of BEA Mentors!

2) The only two real differences between the American and British BEA groups are:

(2A) Insurance reimbursement issues; and

(2B) Worldwide availability of software and hardware features, such as ClearVoice and C1-Harmony, that are stuck in the FDA bureaucracy in Washington.

In any case, the BEA Mentor program ROCKS!

30 08 2010
Ian

Tina and Dan, I have joined this on the UK side and found a mentor who I can identify with. So far it has been very helpful in that they have given me a good idea of the practical aspects of CIs and how they can help. Tina’s blog is of course excellent and I will be reviewing the start again as I have asked for an assessment. No news as yet but I want to be as informed as possible.

Keep up the good work.

30 08 2010
Dan Schwartz, Editor, The Hearing Blog

Ian, Welcome aboard!

There are a couple of other good websites that can give you a good overview;

Miss Abbie Cranmer has an excellent overview of why she chose Advanced Bionics over MedEl and Cochlear:
http://contradica.blogspot.com
However, Miss Cranmer is just days away from getting married, and does not have time to performing mentoring.

Katie-louise “Bionic Bailey” in Derby shows how her CI doesn’t slow her down:
http:// katie-louisescochlearimplant.blogspot.com
Pay attention to her world-class article on securing a CI while playing sports: http://TinyURL.com/KLsports

Tasha Hanley’s “Bionically Yours” is well worth a read:
http://bionicallyyours.blogspot.com/

If music is important to you, be sure to stop by Mike Marzalek’s CI Theory website, and go through it in detail.
http://www.CITheory.com

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