Student Dr. Williams is a medical student pursuing pediatric neurology. She is deaf and hears with a cochlear implant. In this article, discusses the importance of self-advocacy on succeeding with hearing loss, “Representation in medicine matters. For patients, having a Deaf or hard-of-hearing health care provider means having an automatic cultural and language connection, which ensures that communication is optimal.” She is currently working on projects to improve healthcare delivery for the hard-of-hearing.
Have a plan in place before you get sick. Being prepared ahead of time is key. In an epidemic, the hospital can be overwhelming. You may be in a temporary isolation tent or placed in a hallway. You may not have access to communication tools that you usually get. Again, being prepared ahead of time is key. Make a plan with your family if you’re not ready.Read Full article
In the hospital, COVID-19 creates unique challenges for those with hearing loss. COVID-19 patients are separated from other other patients into “respiratory isolation.” This means that masks and noisy air purifiers are widely used. Masks that muffle the voice and prevent lipreading. Unlike other medical settings, masks will not be lowered so that you can lipread.Read Full article
The limitations placed by society can often exceed the limitations placed by disability. Solomon points out that the trajectory of disabled people has quietly improved in the last 40 years. To improve further, people with disabilities must continue to engage the public and tell our own stories. Doing so establishes our humanity, drives inclusion, and demonstrates that a diversity of thought improves the lives for all.Read Full article
Audiology doctoral student Sarah Sparks (Twitter: @saralovesears) is in training at Gallaudet University. Ms. Sparks was born typically hearing and initially resisted cochlear implants. This blog post by Med El describes her journey with hearing loss and the reason for her initial skepticism.Read Full article