|By Marketwired .||
|June 2, 2014 02:07 PM EDT||
WASHINGTON, DC -- (Marketwired) -- 06/02/14 -- Addressing hearing loss on the job should be a workplace wellness priority, says the Better Hearing Institute (BHI), pointing out that in today's service and knowledge-based economy, good communication is critical to business success for both the employer and the employee. In recognition of National Employee Wellness Month in June, BHI is urging employers to include hearing tests and hearing health as part of their workplace wellness programs. Fortunately, hearing aids -- as well as other appropriate treatments and workplace accommodations -- can help individuals function optimally on the job.
To help facilitate timely hearing self-screenings for all American workers, BHI is offering a free and confidential online hearing check at www.BetterHearing.org, where anyone can quickly assess if they need a more comprehensive hearing test by a hearing healthcare professional. The earlier hearing loss gets treated the better.
BHI believes that by empowering America's workers with information on hearing health and options for addressing hearing loss, they can become more informed healthcare consumers and more productive, satisfied employees. BHI also is underscoring the point that hearing loss in the workplace is not the concern, but rather leaving hearing loss unaddressed is. When hearing loss is addressed, it does not have to get in the way.
A Changing Economic Landscape
America has reached the point where hearing health must become a workplace wellness imperative.
The U.S. economy now depends largely on employment that demands good communications skills. Service and knowledge-based work has become increasingly dominant. America also is experiencing a demographic shift toward a maturing labor force. People are staying in the workforce longer; baby boomers are on the threshold of their golden years; and the rate at which young people are entering the job market is slowing as a result of population changes. What's more, just as we're seeing this convergence of economic circumstances, we also are witnessing an increase in adult hearing loss at younger ages.
Already, nearly 40 million Americans suffer from hearing loss. The majority of them are in the workforce. And according to EPIC's "Listen Hear!" survey, more than 10 percent of full-time employees have a diagnosed hearing problem. Another 30 percent suspect they have a problem but have not sought treatment.
The Pitfalls of Brushing Off Hearing Loss
By limiting one's ability to communicate effectively, unaddressed hearing loss can unnecessarily affect productivity, job performance, and earnings; lead to fatigue and distress; restrict interpersonal interactions; make it difficult to receive and interpret auditory information from computers, machines, and individuals; pose a risk to one's ability to hear sounds that signal hazards in the work environment; increase sick leave, presenteeism, and disengagement from work; and diminish overall quality of life.
What's more, an increased risk of hearing loss is tied to three of the most significant wellness concerns of American employers: obesity, diabetes, and smoking.
A national BHI study even found that people with untreated hearing loss lose as much as $30,000 in income annually, depending on their degree of hearing loss. The aggregate yearly loss in income due to underemployment for people with untreated hearing loss is an estimated $176 billion. And the fiscal cost to society in unrealized federal taxes is an estimated $26 billion. This doesn't even measure the impact that unaddressed hearing loss has on worker productivity, absenteeism, and presenteeism.
Not surprisingly, EPIC's "Listen Hear!" survey found that almost all (95%) of employees who suspect they have a hearing problem but have not sought treatment, say they believe their untreated hearing loss impacts them on the job in at least one way. From asking people to repeat what they have said (61%), to misunderstanding what is being said (42%), to even pretending to hear when they can't (40%), the burden that comes with leaving hearing loss unaddressed weighs heavily on America's workers.
Why Addressing Hearing Loss Is a Smart Business Practice
Fortunately, when addressed, hearing loss is largely manageable. The vast majority of people with hearing loss can benefit from hearing aids. Eight out of ten hearing aid users say they're satisfied with the changes that have occurred in their lives specifically due to their hearing aids.
A national BHI study even found that the use of hearing aids reduced the risk of income loss dramatically -- by 90 to 100 percent for those with milder hearing loss, and from 65 to 77 percent for those whose hearing loss was severe to moderate. The study also found that people with severe hearing loss who do use hearing aids are nearly twice as likely to be employed as their peers who do not use them.
Today, most U.S. employers have some type of wellness program. By including hearing tests and hearing health information in workplace wellness programs -- as well as including hearing aids as an employee benefit -- employers encourage workers to treat hearing loss rather than hide it. Not only does this help the worker, but it creates a work environment where employer and employee can team up to ensure that a worker's hearing loss does not interfere with job performance, productivity, safety, quality of life, morale, opportunities, or success in the workplace.
In today's rapidly changing business landscape, where organizations are coming to rely more heavily on maturing workers who have valuable experience and expertise, this employer-employee partnership is critical for bottom-line success.
For a step-by-step breakdown of what to expect, ask, and look for when visiting a hearing healthcare professional and purchasing a hearing aid, download "Your Guide to Buying Hearing Aids" at www.BetterHearing.org or http://ow.ly/xvlow.
For information and resources on workplace wellness, along with information on National Employee Wellness Month, visit www.NationalEmployeeWellnessMonth.com.
Five Things Employers Should Know About Hearing Loss & Employee Health
1. Hearing loss is tied to depression. Research shows that hearing loss is associated with an increased risk of depression in adults of all ages, but is most pronounced in 18 to 69 year olds. Research also shows that the use of hearing aids reduces depressive symptoms. http://ow.ly/vvZEz & http://ow.ly/vWv7m
2. Hearing loss is twice as common in people with diabetes. Studies show that people with diabetes are twice as likely to have hearing loss. When broken down by age, one study showed that those 60 and younger are at greater risk. http://ow.ly/xvn6W
3. Your hearing may say something about your heart. Cardiovascular and hearing health are linked. Some experts say the inner ear is so sensitive to blood flow that it's possible that abnormalities in the cardiovascular system could be noted here earlier than in other less sensitive parts of the body. http://ow.ly/xwLUh
4. Staying fit may also help your hearing. Research on women's health shows that a higher level of physical activity is associated with a lower risk of hearing loss. Conversely, a higher body mass index (BMI) and larger waist circumference in women are each associated with a higher risk of hearing loss. http://ow.ly/xvnsj
5. Hearing loss may put you at greater risk of falling and hospitalization. A Johns Hopkins study showed that people in middle age (40 to 69) with even just mild hearing loss were nearly three times more likely to have a history of falling. Another Johns Hopkins study showed that hospitalization is more likely for older adults with hearing loss. http://ow.ly/vwchC http://ow.ly/vwbZe
What's Different About Today's Hearing Aids?
According to the EPIC "Listen Hear!" survey, most people don't realize that hearing aids have come a long way; nor do they realize that hearing aids are eligible expenses for flexible savings accounts (FSAs) and health savings accounts (HSAs).
Hearing aids today are dramatically more advanced than the hearing aids of even just a few years ago. Many of today's hearing aids allow users to hear from all directions, in all sorts of sound environments, and even underwater. They are digital, wireless, can connect directly to your smartphone or television, and can be as discreet or as visible as you like. A new rechargeable feature on some newly designed hearing aids even allows you to recharge your hearing aids every night, so there's no more need for small batteries.
Better Hearing Institute (BHI)
SYS-CON Events announced today that SUSE, a pioneer in open source software, will exhibit at SYS-CON's DevOps Summit 2015 New York, which will take place June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. SUSE provides reliable, interoperable Linux, cloud infrastructure and storage solutions that give enterprises greater control and flexibility. More than 20 years of engineering excellence, exceptional service and an unrivaled partner ecosystem power the products and support that help ...
May. 30, 2015 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 769
SYS-CON Events announced today that MetraTech, now part of Ericsson, has been named “Silver Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9–11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. Ericsson is the driving force behind the Networked Society- a world leader in communications infrastructure, software and services. Some 40% of the world’s mobile traffic runs through networks Ericsson has supplied, serving more than 2.5 billion subscribers.
May. 30, 2015 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 1,495
Enterprises are fast realizing the importance of integrating SaaS/Cloud applications, API and on-premises data and processes, to unleash hidden value. This webinar explores how managers can use a Microservice-centric approach to aggressively tackle the unexpected new integration challenges posed by proliferation of cloud, mobile, social and big data projects. Industry analyst and SOA expert Jason Bloomberg will strip away the hype from microservices, and clearly identify their advantages and d...
May. 30, 2015 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 1,573
The multi-trillion economic opportunity around the "Internet of Things" (IoT) is emerging as the hottest topic for investors in 2015. As we connect the physical world with information technology, data from actions, processes and the environment can increase sales, improve efficiencies, automate daily activities and minimize risk. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Ed Maguire, Senior Analyst at CLSA Americas, will describe what is new and different about IoT, explore financial, technological and re...
May. 30, 2015 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 664
Today’s enterprise is being driven by disruptive competitive and human capital requirements to provide enterprise application access through not only desktops, but also mobile devices. To retrofit existing programs across all these devices using traditional programming methods is very costly and time consuming – often prohibitively so. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jesse Shiah, CEO, President, and Co-Founder of AgilePoint Inc., discussed how you can create applications that run on all mobile ...
May. 30, 2015 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 5,497
The Internet of Things is not only adding billions of sensors and billions of terabytes to the Internet. It is also forcing a fundamental change in the way we envision Information Technology. For the first time, more data is being created by devices at the edge of the Internet rather than from centralized systems. What does this mean for today's IT professional? In this Power Panel at @ThingsExpo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, panelists will addresses this very serious issue o...
May. 30, 2015 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 1,031
Cloud computing started a technology revolution; now DevOps is driving that revolution forward. By enabling new approaches to service delivery, cloud and DevOps together are delivering even greater speed, agility, and efficiency. No wonder leading innovators are adopting DevOps and cloud together! In his session at DevOps Summit, Andi Mann, Vice President of Strategic Solutions at CA Technologies, explored the synergies in these two approaches, with practical tips, techniques, research data, wa...
May. 30, 2015 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 6,659
paradigm shifts in networking, to cloud and licensure, and all the Internet of Things in between. In 2014 automation was the name of the game. In his session at DevOps Summit, Matthew Joyce, a Sales Engineer at Big Switch, will discuss why in 2015 it’s complexity reduction. Matthew Joyce, a sales engineer at Big Switch, is helping push networking into the 21st century. He is also a hacker at NYC Resistor. Previously he worked at NASA Ames Research Center with the Nebula Project (where OpenSta...
May. 30, 2015 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 631
"People are a lot more knowledgeable about APIs now. There are two types of people who work with APIs - IT people who want to use APIs for something internal and the product managers who want to do something outside APIs for people to connect to them," explained Roberto Medrano, Executive Vice President at SOA Software, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at Cloud Expo, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
May. 30, 2015 10:30 AM EDT Reads: 4,355
SYS-CON Events announced today that O'Reilly Media has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9–11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. O'Reilly Media spreads the knowledge of innovators through its books, online services, magazines, and conferences. Since 1978, O'Reilly Media has been a chronicler and catalyst of cutting-edge development, homing in on the technology trends that really matter and spurring their adoption...
May. 30, 2015 10:30 AM EDT Reads: 877
WebRTC defines no default signaling protocol, causing fragmentation between WebRTC silos. SIP and XMPP provide possibilities, but come with considerable complexity and are not designed for use in a web environment. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Matthew Hodgson, technical co-founder of the Matrix.org, discussed how Matrix is a new non-profit Open Source Project that defines both a new HTTP-based standard for VoIP & IM signaling and provides reference implementations.
May. 30, 2015 10:30 AM EDT Reads: 5,225
There will be 150 billion connected devices by 2020. New digital businesses have already disrupted value chains across every industry. APIs are at the center of the digital business. You need to understand what assets you have that can be exposed digitally, what their digital value chain is, and how to create an effective business model around that value chain to compete in this economy. No enterprise can be complacent and not engage in the digital economy. Learn how to be the disruptor and not ...
May. 30, 2015 10:15 AM EDT Reads: 741
The 5th International DevOps Summit, co-located with 17th International Cloud Expo – being held November 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA – announces that its Call for Papers is open. Born out of proven success in agile development, cloud computing, and process automation, DevOps is a macro trend you cannot afford to miss. From showcase success stories from early adopters and web-scale businesses, DevOps is expanding to organizations of all sizes, including the...
May. 30, 2015 10:00 AM EDT Reads: 4,113
2015 predictions circa 1970: houses anticipate our needs and adapt, city infrastructure is citizen and situation aware, office buildings identify and preprocess you. Today smart buildings have no such collective conscience, no shared set of fundamental services to identify, predict and synchronize around us. LiveSpace and M2Mi are changing that. LiveSpace Smart Environment devices deliver over the M2Mi IoT Platform real time presence, awareness and intent analytics as a service to local connecte...
May. 30, 2015 10:00 AM EDT Reads: 659
Thanks to widespread Internet adoption and more than 10 billion connected devices around the world, companies became more excited than ever about the Internet of Things in 2014. Add in the hype around Google Glass and the Nest Thermostat, and nearly every business, including those from traditionally low-tech industries, wanted in. But despite the buzz, some very real business questions emerged – mainly, not if a device can be connected, or even when, but why? Why does connecting to the cloud cre...
May. 30, 2015 09:45 AM EDT Reads: 736