It has been two years since Adaptive Audiology Solutions provider and owner Sondra Rierson, AuD, began providing cochlear implant (CI) and BAHA services to the Carroll and Denison area. The Cochlear Provider Network (CPN) acts as an extension of Cochlear Corporation, the world’s leading manufacturer of cochlear implant technology. Fewer than 6% of those eligible for a cochlear implant receive one, and one of the main barriers is access to services. The CPN allows those in rural areas to receive the care they need for their cochlear implant and BAHA needs.
The structure of the program works to eliminate as much travel as possible for the patient. Dr. Rierson performs cochlear candidacy testing or demonstrations of the BAHA. If the patient falls with the guidelines for CI or BAHA, Dr. Rierson provides educational counseling regarding the surgery, recovery and most importantly, what outcomes can be expected. Dr. Rierson’s network of surgeons includes Dr. Thedinger of Ear Specialists of Omaha and Dr. Carfrae of Iowa Ear Center. Patients have their choice of surgeon, however Dr. Rierson’s partnership is with Thedinger and Carfrae.
Dr. Rierson states that she has noticed how pleased patients are that they can receive this care close to home: “The structure of the Cochlear Provider Network makes it much easier for the deaf and hard of hearing to receive services. Instead of going to Omaha or Des Moines for each CI programming appointment, they can come to me for their care and only see the surgeon for the intake appointment and surgery. All follow up is provided locally, saving them time, and often also saving them money.”
If you have a patient that is not benefiting from hearing aids, we encourage you to consider referring them to our office for testing to see if an implantable solution is right for them. These devices are covered by most major insurances, including Medicare.