Consumer Reports and others expose hearing aids
If you have the time and interest, read the Consumer Reports and Hearing Review articles and the other materials provided on this website.
In July 2009 Consumer's Union exposed an industry without hearing-correction standards.
Two-thirds of the hearing aids purchased by their research subjects... were "misfit", according to Consumer's Union when they set out to test hearing aids.
Consumers Reports, July 2009
Today, a consensus of nearly every group associated with hearing correction admits that:
"quality control at the point of dispensing has not kept pace with technological improvements."
Hearing Review, April 2010, http://www.hearingreview.com
In the 1990's the Senate Special Committee on Aging and the FDA were made aware of the sorry state of hearing healthcare in America. The National Institutes of Health is currently looking at the issues because they found:
"For many reasons, the current hearing healthcare (HHC) system in the United States is not meeting the needs of the vast majority of adults with HL [Hearing Loss]."
NIH August, 2009. http://www.nidcd.nih.gov/funding/programs/09HHC/summary.htm
How can you assure yourself that you are getting the benefit you are capable of, and the value you are paying for?
You need to be an informed consumer!
Dr. Gil Magilen, a UC Berkeley-trained biophysicist and neuroscientist has been developing hearing aid fitting methods and making a plea for advanced training in the hearing-aid provider community for over 20 years.
- "Effect of Small Changes of Acoustic Energy on Real World Performance with Hearing Aids", Magilen, G. ( 2007)
- "The Missing Link - The Importance of Diagnostic and Fitting Strategies for Clinical Amelioration of Hearing Loss Using Digital Hearing Aid Technology", Twenty First Danavox Symposium, Magilen, G. & Greenberg, S. (2005)-
- "METHOD AND APPARATUS FOR TESTING HEARING AND FITTING HEARING AIDS", United States Patent # 6674862, Magilen, G. (2004)
- "Hearing-Aid Consumer Action Proposal to FDA: FDA Oversight of Hearing-Aid Technology Should Be Strengthened Not Weakened", Magilen, G. (2004)
- "Maximizing Sound Quality and Audibility with Hearing Aids - A Direct Approach to User Satisfaction", Magilen, G. (1994)
- "A Need for Knowledgeable, Responsible Hearing Systems Specialists", Magilen, G. (1990)
- "The Guided Selection Method", Magilen, G. (1990)
- "The Real Hearing Aid Market", Magilen, G. (1990)
He developed and patented real-ear hearing measurement instrumentation and methods that create objective, scientifically verifiable solutions for people with hearing impairment to assure optimal performance from their hearing aids.
His methods require the detailed management of sound for each individual ear and neurological ability.
He tells consumers, "If you can't hear whispers and at the same time hear loud sounds, comfortably and naturally... then most-likely you too have been misfit."
This website is a resource to help consumers understand their hearing impairment and evaluate the effectiveness of the hearing aids they buy.
Properly correcting hearing impairment is a challenging and difficult task.
Providing just enough comfortable amplification to get a person to become "deceptively satisfied" and buy hearing aids is easy... even if they are not receiving their proper correction.
The problem for the consumer is: they don't know what a proper correction sounds like... they don't know what to realistically expect... so they end up wasting money, buying hearing aids, and accepting benefits, significantly below their hearing potential.
Over 1 million people buy hearing aids and don't use them.
Dr. Gil doesn't want you to be one of them!