couple talking on the couch

Dr. Cliff Olson, AuD. Has created a network of Audiologists across the U.S dedicated to following industry standards and best practices along with several criteria to ensure the best possible outcomes.

This means that as a patient looking for an Audiologist via the Dr. Cliff network, you can rest assured you will get the utmost care and treatment possible in your area. This article will discuss what it means to be a part of the Dr. Cliff Network and how you and your loved ones can benefit from it.

Who is Dr. Cliff Olson?

Dr. Cliff Olson is a Board Certified Audiologist who holds a doctoral degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He belongs to the Academy of Doctors of Audiology and the American Academy of Audiology. He is the owner/operator of Applied Hearing Solutions in Phoenix, Arizona.

You may have seen in many of our posts as he is also a YouTuber who gives helpful tips on hearing loss, new hearing products, and more. We highly recommend following his YouTube channel for up-to-date information on everything hearing health-related.

Dr. Cliff understood that it could be hard for people to find an Audiologist who follows best practices. So he started a network of vetted providers committed to following Hearing Aid Best practices. They provide the highest level of hearing care to their patients and act as a fiduciary on the patient’s behalf.

Stressful home work environment causing increase in tinnitus

What are Audiology Best Practices?

Many professional industries have best practice guidelines. The hearing industry also has best practice guidelines when fitting hearing aids to ensure that providers understand what is asked of them to maximize hearing treatment benefits.

The American Academy of Audiology put together a team to develop Best Practice Guidelines for the Audiologic Management of Adult Hearing Impairment. These guidelines were created from the evidence and provide recommendations in four general areas.

  • Assessment and goal setting
  • Technical aspects of treatment
  • Orientation, counseling, and follow up
  • Assessing outcomes

Audiology Assessment and Goal Setting

There are a few things that should be looked at before treatment can be determined. These include a comprehensive case history, otoscopic inspection, cerumen removal (if needed), a hearing assessment, and a proper needs assessment.

These first few steps will determine the severity of the hearing loss and the needs of the patient to help formulate the beginning of their care plan. Ensuring you have the full picture allows you to make a proper recommendation, providing the treatment is compatible with the patient’s lifestyle. Without these steps, it can make the entire fitting process difficult.

Technical Aspects of Audiological Treatment

When we look at the technical aspects, this covers hearing aid selection, fitting and verification, hearing assistive technology, and quality control. When looking at hearing aid selection, many considerations go into place, which includes:

  1. Style and fit of a hearing aid
  2. Volume or power needs
  3. CROS vs. BICROS vs AmpCROS
  4. Bone anchored hearing aid
  5. Telecoil needs
  6. Wireless (Bluetooth) connectivity
hearing aid being held by audiologist

Quality Control

Your hearing care professional will evaluate your hearing instruments, including test box measures, to make sure they are performing correctly mechanically and to verify the digital features are performing accurately.

Fitting and Verification

Real Ear Measurements (REMs), or sometimes called probe microphone measurements, is the gold standard to determine how precise the amplification level within every frequency a hearing aid user’s equipment is operating to achieve the best hearing improvement possible.

During this test, a thin microphone is inserted into the ear canal along with the hearing aid. This allows the audiologist to obtain readings of the same sound levels the user receives from their hearing aid while listening to various recordings of speech samples.

Audiology Orientation, Counseling, and Follow-up

A comprehensive consultation/orientation can substantially improve how much success you have with your hearing treatment. Counseling and follow-up care also ensure that you have continued success for years to come. Having a plan in place for treatment and equipment options, along with follow-up care on how your devices will be maintained, is very important.

Outcome Assessment

Although Real Ear Measurement is a form of verification, Outcome assessments are generally validation forms. There are several Outcome Assessments such as the Hearing Handicap Inventory for Elderly (HHIE), Abbreviated Profile of Hearing Aid Benefit (APHAB), and the Client Oriented Scale of Improvement (COSI) are great ways to ensure that the hearing care provider has done an excellent job and that you are receiving significant benefit with hearing treatment.

At Salem Audiology Clinic, we not only use best practices, but we also belong to the Dr. Cliff network. For more than 35 years, we have been committed to providing top-notch service to everyone that walks through the door. If you are not in the Salem/Keizer or Woodburn area and would like to find an Audiologist committed to following best practices, you can find a provider that has been personally vetted by Dr. Cliff the same way we have.