Fibre broadband: advancing hearing aid technology in Ireland
With high-speed broadband, audiologists in Ireland are changing the way they work for the benefit of patients suffering from hearing loss.
Hearing aid audiologist, Padraig McGinty, heads up the North West Hearing Clinic based in Letterkenny, Donegal. He uses open eir’s high-speed broadband network to improve the quality of the clinic’s service to patients.
“Letterkenny has changed,” says Padraig. “North West Hearing has certainly changed. With the advances of hearing aid technology, the results we’re now getting for the hearing impaired are fantastic. High-speed broadband has been terrific for the North West Hearing Clinic.”
FIXING A HEARING AID FROM ACROSS THE OCEAN
Padraig and his team at the clinic work with a specialist audiology provider located in Ontario, Canada, around 5,000 kilometres away. A team of audiometrists in Ontario then take control of the clinic’s hard drive and reset hearing aids whenever needed.
“You might have a little old lady from Donegal sitting here, and she’s wearing two very tiny hearing aids in her ears,” explains Padraig. “Then, you may have a team of audiometrists in Canada tweaking away. It’s all done wirelessly.”
In the past, Padraig would have had to send the hearing aid over to a specialist in the UK, where it would spend a few days getting fixed in the lab and further few days each side for transport and delivery.
“During that week or so, the client has no hearing aid,” says Padraig. “It’s a very quiet world for somebody when they lose their hearing aid. If I can get the hearing aid rebooted through high speed broadband instantly, it makes me look very smart.”
Customers no longer have to wait days, or even hours for their hearing aids to be fixed. Padraig says: “It’s very effective and it can – and does – change people’s lives on a daily basis.”
BROADBAND ENABLING CLOUD TECHNOLOGY
The North West Hearing Clinic has just started using a new cloud-based customer management system, which has day-to-day tasks simpler at the company. It sends out receipts, invoices, manages client history – ultimately, it keeps track of every aspect of the business.
“Staff love it,” says Padraig. “I’ve got another shop in Sligo and I can keep track of the same agenda there as well from the head office here.”
Padraig feels high-speed broadband has given his business the opportunity to stay on par with its leading counterparts in any city globally.
“I feel very proud of that,” he says. “We really do offer a high-speed service with high-speed broadband.”