Current Supported Programs
COCHLEAR IMPLANT PROGRAM this program was initiated by support from the Virginia Lions Hearing Foundation. It is now one of the most active in the United States and is ranked as one of the top five centers in the country. The Cochlear Implant is a device that restores sound to profoundly deaf individuals.
IMPLANTABLE HEARING AID PROJECT – the Hearing Foundation provided “seed” money for this project to help lay the ground work necessary for further developments. Since its inception in 1986 a patent was awarded on the concept of this device which will eliminate background noises and feedback which is currently an inherent problem with conventional hearing aids. This program has also been supported by other Foundations, including Lions Clubs International Foundation (LCIF) who have given two $50,000 matching grants. This project has received much publicity and is currently working on the development of a device suitable for human use.
HAIR CELL REGENERATION – each of us is born with a specific number of hair cells”, which are the cells located in the cochlea of the ear and are necessary for us to hear. When they are damaged (exposure to loud noise is one of the greatest causes of damage) they are damaged for life. This research is working towards finding a way regenerate these dead hair cells which may restore hearing to those individuals suffering from “nerve deafness”. Significant break throughs have been made recently. The Hearing Foundation has been a major contributor in this research effort.
NEWBORN HEARING SCREENING this program was initiated through contributions from the Hearing Foundation over 15 years ago. The program tests newborns for hearing impairments, which is vital to healthy development. The General Assembly used our program as a study center and due to its success, has now implemented a law where all high-risk new-borns (pre-mature, hearing loss history in the family, etc.) be tested for hearing loss. We continue to support this program as new techniques and equipment are continuously developed to give the best possible testing and results to these young lives.
EDUCATION We provide educational information and materials to Lions Clubs for distribution throughout Virginia. We provide ear plugs for hearing protection and brochures and educational materials are available on many Hearing Related topics.