Audiology in Brief The New York Relay Captioned Telephone Service began operation Jan. 1. The service is an assistive technology aimed at easing communications for those who are hard of hearing, have experienced hearing loss later in life, or are deaf and prefer to use their own voice. Commission Chairman William Flynn ... News in Brief
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News in Brief  |   February 01, 2007
Audiology in Brief
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Hearing Disorders / News in Brief
News in Brief   |   February 01, 2007
Audiology in Brief
The ASHA Leader, February 2007, Vol. 12, 5. doi:10.1044/leader.NIB.12022007.5
The ASHA Leader, February 2007, Vol. 12, 5. doi:10.1044/leader.NIB.12022007.5
NY Offers Captioned Telephone Service
The New York Relay Captioned Telephone Service began operation Jan. 1. The service is an assistive technology aimed at easing communications for those who are hard of hearing, have experienced hearing loss later in life, or are deaf and prefer to use their own voice.
Commission Chairman William Flynn noted that New York’s proposed rollout of 300 captioned phones per month would be the largest monthly installation rate of the service in the country.
The service was developed by Ultratec, Inc., of Madison, WI, and requires a special CapTel™-equipped phone. Phone users place a call in the same way they would use a traditional phone. The CapTel phone automatically connects to a captioning service. When the other party answers, the CapTel phone user hears the other party’s voice on the phone, just as with any other amplified phone. Simultaneously, a trained operator at the captioning services transcribes everything the other party says into written text, which appears on a display window built into the phone. The free service is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.
The CapTel phones are available to New York residents on a first-come, first-served basis, one per household, at a cost of $99 each. For information or a telephone order form, call 800-233-9130 V/TTY. More information is also available at www.nyrelay.com or www.captionedtelephone.com/index.phtml.
Airport Announcements Get Easier to Hear in MI
Airline passengers who use hearing aids will find travel easier at Gerald R. Ford International Airport in Grand Rapids, MI. Improvements to the public address system will add technology that transmits flight announcements directly into hearing aids with a special receiver.
The technology, known as a hearing loop, lets small receivers—available in more than half of hearing aids and cochlear implants—pick up sounds directly from a microphone, television, or telephone. The technology, already widely used at British airports, would become a national model.
Maggie Smedley, director of Deaf and Hard of Hearing Service in Grand Rapids, told The Grand Rapids Press that those with hearing impairments face serious challenges when they fly. “Many don’t dare go to the bathroom or get any food because they might miss when the flight is going to board,” she said.
The airport’s aeronautics director, James Koslosky, suggested adding the new technology. The airport planned to spend $115,000 upgrading public-address software, and Koslosky said that adding a hearing loop would be a natural move.
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February 2007
Volume 12, Issue 2