Hearing Instrument Specialist – What Do They Do?
A hearing instrument specialist, or HIS, is an individual who is trained in and specializes in hearing loss testing and dispensing of hearing aids. Of course their job description is not limited to performing just these two jobs. In fact a HIS has quite a diverse job description.
What do they do?
A hearing instrument specialist is a hearing healthcare professional for individuals with hearing loss. A hearing instrument specialist usually attends a junior college for about two years. Their schooling consists of classroom work, lab work and a practicum, which is typically six months long. This combination of classroom work, lab work and a practicum helps to make an individual a well-rounded and knowledgeable HIS.
Hearing aid selection
When in the field, a hearing instrument specialist uses all of their education and practical experience to work for their patients. They are there to help their patients find, know and understand their hearing health needs. Most hearing aid specialists work in a private clinic, though some may wish to open their own clinic. Hearing aid specialists work with patients of all ages. Typically, however, a hearing aid specialist is limited to treating individuals with hearing loss caused by aging, called presbycusis. Individuals who may have hearing loss caused by other issues, such as medical issues or other diseases typically need to see an audiologist or more qualified and trained hearing healthcare professional.
Fitting hearing aids
In general a HIS will see multiple patients throughout their workday. They will perform initial consultations, hearing examinations, follow-up consultations, hearing aid fitting appointments, repair appointments, hearing aid adjustment appointments or custom earmold impression appointments. In addition, they can program and repair hearing aids. They order supplies, hearing aids and customer earmolds. They counsel and rehabilitate their patients as well as friends and family members of their patients. They fit hearing aids and go over general care and maintenance of hearing aids. They also perform general care and maintenance over the lifetime of the hearing aid.
In general a hearing instrument specialist takes care of not only their patients hearing, but also their patient’s hearing aids and any hearing health needs. They are a very important part of your general healthcare team. If you think you may have hearing loss or have been diagnosed with hearing loss, consider visiting a hearing instrument specialist so you can be fitted for hearing aids and enjoy a happier, more fulfilling life.