Audiologist Julia Shih traveled to Parintins, Brazil to make the Auditory Health Project a reality this July. All hearing instruments for the mission were donated by the Oticon Hearing Foundation.
“We predict to see more people than last year, in which we served more than 130 people and fit more than 200 hearing aids. We will also be able to expand the frontier of this work to remote areas. We will be going to the Ribeirinhos region and the village of Satere Mawe.
Although I have many requests and choices for hearing missions throughout the year, I opt for this project once again because I see the benefit of it. We want to remember that who benefits from this are the people who need hearing care and have no means.” – Julia Shih
Below are two patient stories, sharing the impact of their work.
Seventeen year-old Helisson arrived with his mother for a consult for the first time. They live in a rural area distant from the city, therefore could not afford and did not know where to seek help. A neighbor heard of our hearing project in Parintins and his mother brought him to the hospital for help.
A hearing evaluation revealed severe hearing loss bilaterally. Hellison was fit with Oticon Dynamo behind-the-ear hearing aids, giving him the ability to hear after twelve years of silence.
14 year-old Vitoria arrived at the clinic with her mother. She was evaluated numerous times but no one could get an exact, reliable audiogram. She was finally referred to the capital city Manaus for an ABR, which showed 80 dB in her left ear, and no hearing in her right. Her mother has searched for help for her hearing, but could not afford a hearing aid. She heard about our project on the radio, and came to the hospital where we were stationed.
Vitoria’s evaluation revealed a deaf right ear and severe-to-profound hearing loss in her left. She was fit with a baby blue hearing aid and heard her mother’s voice for the first time.