Research in this Theme is focused on the development of automated self-fitting devices and web-based hearing healthcare delivery models that:

  • engage end-users in managing their hearing protection and remediation;
  • ensure equal access for regional, rural/remote communities; and
  • provide career support and training for rural-based hearing healthcare professionals.

In non-urban areas of Australia, people with a hearing loss rely heavily on clinicians visiting rural and regional communities to address their clinical needs. Alternatively, clients travel long distances to metropolitan centres which involves substantial costs. Our research will develop and validate new hearing healthcare service models to address this challenge, it is likely to also employ automated self-fitting devices and web-based solutions that empower clients to have an active role in managing their own hearing loss.

Research and technologies developed in this research Program also have great potential for application in developing countries where a lack of audiology services limits hearing aid fitting to less than 10% of those who can benefit from the technology.

Despite increasing public debate and awareness of the risks to hearing from our noisier lifestyle, many young adults continue to acquire preventable hearing loss and tinnitus through their leisure activities. This Program will work closely with our HEARsmart Initiative to development innovative hearing loss prevention programs, campaigns and services that are effective in changing at-risk behaviour in targeted high-risk groups.

The Key Projects in this Theme are shown below.