The CI2018 Emerging Issues Symposium is a forum for hearing health clinicians, scientists, students and governmental officials to come together to share research and best clinical practices relating to cochlear implants and other implantable auditory devices. The Symposium will feature 2 ½ days of clinical research presentations. This popular format combines invited speakers and panels on key emerging issues as well as submitted podium and poster presentations.
On Wednesday, prior to the official meeting start, we welcome our members to participate in ACI Alliance on the Hill. This is an opportunity to share our perspectives on cochlear implant care and access with both Members of Congress and appointed officials.
Additional information pertaining to the scientific program content and schedule will be posted as they become available.
CI2018 Emerging Issues
The emerging issues format allows an in-depth look at topics needing greater exploration to advance the field. With CI candidacy expansion, there is a need to address ways to appropriately serve new recipients as well as previously implanted individuals who require care throughout their lifetime. In the pediatric realm, children who are deaf are being identified at birth and there is a need for parents to support their CI child’s language development at an earlier age.
Four clinical research topics were identified that are particularly important to cochlear implant outcomes and access today. These four themes, as well as submitted podium and poster talks, will provide clinical research insights for attendees that are applicable in today’s care setting. Invited Emerging Issues speakers were selected from wide-spread clinical settings and diverse geographic areas.
1. Parental Engagement in Pediatric CI Outcomes Parents and the home routines they create play central roles in a child’s development. Research in pediatric CI outcomes has identified specific ways in which significant caregivers can promote acquisition and growth in spoken language and literacy skills in children with hearing loss. This research also highlights the effectiveness of providing parents and caregivers with specific knowledge and strategies that can be woven into family life to support their child’s communication and literacy development.
2. Quality of Life Associated with Cochlear Implantation Measures of health-related quality of life (QOL) provide unique information about the impact of a disability and its treatment. The NIH, FDA and CMS have all added QOL as outcome measures for healthcare interventions. Conventional measures of CI outcomes such as auditory and communicative competence (i.e., word and sentence recognition) are essential but do not adequately capture the broad impact of deafness on a patient’s physical, behavioral, social and emotional functioning. A poor correlation between self-report and such typically measured outcomes represents a significant gap in how we assess CIs in adults, which impairs clinicians’ ability to comprehensively quantify CI benefits, preoperatively counsel patients on CI expectations, and provide intervention in areas not related to communication. The session will examine the use of QOL instruments to allow direct input from the CI population and families regarding CI benefits on an individual’s daily functioning, beyond speech understanding.
3. Cochlear Implant Practice Management: Maximizing Value for Optimal Delivery of Care As indications for cochlear implantation continue to expand, constraints in serving patients at already busy cochlear implant centers will worsen. Some centers have instituted innovative practices to optimize efficiency in delivering clinical services. This session will examine techniques and technologies already in place as well as possible future innovations that could improve efficiency and value for CI centers and patients. Such innovations include telehealth in the evaluation, pre-operative, and post-operative elements of CI; in-center programming efficiencies; outsourced audiology services; and industry utilization. Patients may benefit from satellite centers in smaller cities or rural areas that are now poorly served. Existing and needed research to guide adoption and use of such innovative practices will be reviewed.
4. CI Candidacy in 2018 When cochlear implants were first introduced, candidacy determination was a straightforward process: patients were expected to have bilateral profound deafness and demonstrate no benefit from hearing aids, which often meant 0% speech recognition. As technology has improved, CI candidacy has expanded to include patients with greater amounts of residual hearing and greater speech recognition skills. This session will review recent changes in CI Candidacy, including the use of contemporary measures to evaluate traditional candidates, medical/surgical considerations when determining CI Candidacy, the role that age and cognition play in candidacy considerations, and expansion of candidacy to include patients with SSD and asymmetric hearing losses.
Special Programs for Therapists and Educators
Therapists and Educators are encouraged to join us at CI2018 DC for the year’s best US conference on cochlear implants, clinical care and related research with a focused program highlighting therapy and aftercare to maximize patient outcomes.