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Audiology

Some of our audiology team members.

Audiology During COVID-19

Appointments

Under Audiology COVID 19, I have reworded the statement only very slightly as below. There is no longer a separate appointments and repairs:

We are undertaking all routine adult and paediatric appointments across all of our sites. We have learnt from the pandemic and ensured that all environments are safe and clean for you to attend, waiting rooms avoid overcrowding and long waiting times in clinic are reduced.

Repairs have now  been moved to booked appointments and some routine appointments may be carried out remotely over the phone or by video consultation. You will receive an appointment letter which will detail how your appointment will be carried out.

For more information about repairs please see: Repairs – Audiology

Batteries and Tubes

Please contact us by email swb-tr.audiology@nhs.net to request replacements. Include your name, address and date of birth in your email. You can also request by phone on 0121 507 4875 (Hearing Services Centre/James Preston Health Centre) or 0121 612 2366 (Audiology, Lyng Health Centre).

Thank you for your understanding and patience during this time.

 


Sandwell and West Birmingham NHS Trust provide a range of services for both adults and children. We provide care across Birmingham, Sandwell and the surrounding areas.

We have a large team consisting of audiologists, audiological scientists, assistant audiologists, newborn hearing screeners, paediatricians and administrative staff. We also have close links with Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) consultants and teachers of the deaf.

Our goal is to provide diagnostic and rehabilitative care in the form of:

  • Accurate hearing tests in sound treated rooms
  • Digital hearing aid provision
  • Counselling and management strategies
  • Providing access to assistive listening devices within the home
  • Tinnitus management and counselling
  • Vestibular assessment and rehabilitation

We offer our services at a wide variety of locations to help meet your needs whenever we can. These include:

Valerie is one of our receptionists at the Lyng Health Centre.

  • Hearing Services Centre, City Hospital
  • Lyng Health Centre, West Bromwich
  • James Preston Health Centre
  • Rowley Regis Hospital, Rowley Regis
  • Neptune Health Park, Tipton

National Accreditation for Audiology

Sandwell and West Birmingham NHS Trust Audiology Services are accredited by the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS).

UKAS are a national body who inspect Audiology services to ensure quality, care and patient safety. Our Audiology service has held this accreditation since 2013 and was one of the first in the country to gain this coveted quality mark for Routine and Complex Adult Audiology Services, Children’s Audiology Services and Newborn Hearing Screening.

For more information about disabled access for this service, please click here.

Team

Our multi-disciplinary team is made up of clinical scientists, audiologists, assistant audiologists, and administrative and clerical support.

Service Manager (Acting)
Claire Lingard, Principal Clinical Scientist

Head of Audiology
Joanne Bromhall

Deputy Head of Audiology
Rebecca Few

Clinical Scientists in Audiology

Cath Beardes
Terri Harding
Naomi Joannou
Abigail Jones
Kathryn Keyes
Andrew Rutter
Elena Brewer (Trainee)
Shahrior Mian( Trainee)

Audiologists
Rajpreet Achall
Farhana Begum
Fiona Bowen
Jaspreet Chohan
Maryam Faruki
Wendy Field
Wacas Gafoor
Charndeep Gill
Karen Harris
Mark Hassall
Annette Hill
Sajida Julfar
Avaes Latif
Carl Longden
Paramjit Rai
Sharon Thomas
Phil Ypres-Smith
Nisha Zahid

Assistant Audiologists
Sharon Robinson
Linsey Smith
Anthea Green
Kira Cheatle
James Roberts (Apprentice)

Admin and Clerical
Rafiqua Adalat
Sarah Barnes
Jean Mckinley
Alison O’Neil
Karen Vernum
Paulette Weir
Valrie Woollery

Newborn Hearing Screening Programme
Claire Lingard (Audiology)
Dr Helen Robertson (Medical)
Sarah Murphy (Head of NHSP)

Services

Services for Adults

Free Hearing Tests:

  • At the Trust, your hearing is important to us. The team is committed to carrying out a thorough assessment in specially treated sound proof booths. We are able to refer directly to the Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) consultant reducing delays in your diagnosis/treatment.
  • We can arrange referrals to other specialist services including adult cochlear implants and bone anchored hearing aids if required.
  • Anyone who is concerned about their hearing should contact their GP. If you would like to do a quick hearing check at home click here for an online hearing check from Action on Hearing Loss.
  • You can be referred to the audiology service by your GP for a hearing assessment and hearing aid fitting, if this is appropriate. In some cases we can perform the hearing assessment and fit the hearing aids on the same day.
  • If you have had ear problems in the past or do not meet the criteria to be referred directly to the service, you will be referred to see a consultant in the ENT department first. Your consultant may then refer you to the audiology service for hearing aids if required.

Hearing Aids:

  • Digital hearing aids are fitted routinely for all patients. They are fitted to each individual’s needs via a computerised system that makes them unique to the wearer. Using up-to-date technology, counselling and questionnaires, we can develop individual management plans allowing us to create a pathway of care centred around the patient’s needs.
  • All patients who need hearing aids will be shown how to use and care for them, and will be given information on how to get used to wearing a hearing aid, how often to wear it and where to get replacement batteries. We appreciate this is a lot of information to take in so you will be given instruction cards and contact details should you have any problems.

For links to more information about using and maintaining hearing aids please click on the patient information tab.

Hearing Aid Follow-up And Repair:

  • It is important to ensure you are managing you hearing aid(s) well. Approximately eight weeks after you have received your hearing aid(s) you will have a follow up phone consultation. This appointment is used to re-cap information covered at your fitting appointment and to assess whether your hearing needs have been met. If a face to face appointment is required, this will be booked with you over the phone..
  • If you require general maintenance or adjustments to your hearing aid(s), you can contact the department via phone or email and request a phone consultation for advice or a face to face appointment for adjustments (please see link for repairs on details page).

Depending on the type of hearing aid you have, your hearing aid tubing will need to be changed every 3 to 6 months. Your audiologist will give you more details about this at your fitting appointment. Tubing can be posted out with instruction on how to attach or an appointment can be booked if you have difficulty.

Hearing Aid Battery Collection:

  • Replacement batteries are provided via a postal service. These can be requested either via e-mail or phone (please see link for repairs on details page.
  • If you are attending Audiology for an appointment, batteries can be requested on the day.

Lost Hearing Aids:

  • If you lose your hearing aid, you will need to contact the department via phone or email and an Audiologist will explain how to arrange a replacement hearing aid. An appointment will be made and. You will be asked to complete a form detailing the loss of the aid. You may incur a charge of £60 per hearing aid. This is to cover the administration costs of replacing your hearing aid. Exemption from charges is based on individual cases.

Domicillary Visits:

  • We are able to offer a home visit service for individuals that are fully housebound.
  • Referrals must be made via your GP requesting a home visit assessment.

Specialist Services for Adults

Specialist Hearing Aid:

  • Individuals with complex needs sometimes require additional or alternative intervention.
  • This can include longer appointment times for more extensive counselling or alternative methods of testing and treating a more complex hearing loss.
  • These individuals are not always able to follow our routine adult care pathway. In these instances, you will be referred to our Specialist Adult Rehab Team (SART).
  • There are three main categories that would suggest you require a specialist care pathway:
  1. Hearing loss complexity. Examples include profound, asymmetrical or steeply sloping hearing losses.
  2. Co-existing or cofounding conditions. Examples include adults with learning disabilities, neurological disorders or dementia.
  3. Poor outcomes following routine adult intervention. Examples include individuals who are frequently attending Audiology for hearing aid adjustments without the expected improvement.
  • Presentation of these issues may arise at any point in the care pathway, whether at receipt of referral, initial assessment, hearing aid fitting or follow up.
  • If a member of staff has identified a patient as non-routine or complex, they will take the necessary steps to ensure the patient is seen by the relevant clinician on a Specialist Adult Rehab clinic.

Please be aware, not all individuals with the above complexities require SART team intervention. Many can still follow the routine adult treatment pathway.

Tinnitus:

  • Tinnitus is a condition where noises are heard in one or both ears.
  • These noises can range from whistling or buzzing to songs or machinery.
  • Referrals would normally come via ENT, however if there are no other ENT symptoms, we can accept direct referrals from your GP.
  • We offer advice, support and equipment to help you manage your tinnitus more effectively.
  • Please see the Patient information tab for more information about tinnitus

Services for children

Newborn Hearing Screening:

  • We manage one of the largest newborn hearing screening programmes in England.
  • Babies born in the Sandwell, West Birmingham and Solihull areas will be screened by our team.
  • We offer a newborn hearing screen for babies within the first few weeks of life with the aim of identifying hearing loss and providing support as early as possible.
  • The screen only takes a few seconds per ear. It is normally carried out whilst your baby is sleeping.
  • A small rubber tip is placed just at the opening of the ear canal and sound is played into the ear.
  • We measure the ear’s response to the sound to determine its functionality.
  • Babies who do not pass their newborn hearing screen will be offered diagnostic testing to establish whether a hearing loss is present. We will provide appropriate management of any hearing loss found.
  • For more information about the Newborn Hearing Screening Programme click here.

Hearing Assessment:

  • Referrals are received from GPs, health visitors, school nurses, speech therapists and paediatricians.
  • A paediatric audiologist will ask you and your child questions about their hearing and will examine their ears.
  • An age appropriate test will be chosen to assess your child’s hearing by one or two audiologists.
  • Behavioural testing is normally carried out, where we teach your child to listen and respond to a sound via an action or motion. This is usually done by playing a game. This helps to keep your child engaged in a natural and comfortable way.
  • The results and further action required, including a future appointment if necessary, will be fully explained to you on the day of your appointment.

Hearing Aids:

  • If your child requires a hearing aid, they will be referred to us via an ENT consultant.
  • A full assessment will be carried out as above and the most appropriate digital hearing aid will be selected for your child.
  • You and your child will be given full instruction on how the hearing aid works, how to care for the aid and what to do should you be having any problems.

Hearing Aid Review:

  • We provide regular follow ups for your child within the first few months of their hearing aid fitting.
  • Once your child is comfortable and settled with their hearing aid, they will then receive a regular review.
  • Should any problems arise between your hearing aid review dates, please contact the department via phone or email to make an appointment (please see Repairs link on Details page).

School Age Screening:

PLEASE NOTE THIS SERVICE IS CURRENTLY SUSPENDED DUE THE PANDEMIC

  • If your child attends school in the Sandwell area, they will receive a hearing screen when they are in reception.
  • A letter will be sent home to inform you of the hearing screen and you can confirm whether you wish for your child to be tested.
  • If a hearing problem is highlighted, the relevant referrals will be made and you will be informed.

 

Patient Stories

To find out what some of our patients think about this service see below:

Patient Information

 When you attend James Preston Health Centre please report to the Audiology reception.

Below you will find patient information leaflets and links to useful websites. 

Brandt-Daroff Exercises (ML6446)
Background Information for Vestibular Rehabilitation Exercises (ML5350)

HEARING AID INFORMATION

Hearing aids and battery safety

Getting used to your hearing aid:

  • At first your hearing may sound echoey, tinny and hollow.
  • It is natural to feel that your own voice sounds louder than it should do in the first few weeks.
  • It can take up to eight weeks to fully adjust to your new hearing aids.
  • Try to wear your new hearing aids on a daily basis. Ideally, wearing them all day would be beneficial.
  • If you struggle to adjust to wearing your hearing aids, find a routine that suits you. Examples include:
    1. Wear for two hours in the morning, then afternoon and then evening for the first couple of weeks.
    2. Wears for one to two hours at a time taking comfort breaks of approximately one hour and then repeat. Try and reduce comfort breaks as each week passes.
    3. Wear in the house for the first one to two weeks and then slowly introduce your hearing aids to the outside environment.
  • It is natural to feel overwhelmed. Having your hearing back can be an exciting but also strange experience. Your audiologist will offer advice, counselling and tactics to help you acclimatise.

Instruction sheets for our adult hearing aids are available on the following link. Translations are also available in Arabic, Bulgarian, Mandarin, Polish, Punjabi and Urdu.

TINNITUS INFORMATION

Useful links:

CHILDREN’S SERVICES INFORMATION

Useful links:

SPECIAL EQUIPMENT FOR HOME AND WORK

If you need help or advice regarding special equipment in the home (e.g. telephones and smoke alarms) or at work please contact the following services according to where you live:

Assistive listening devices:

Sandwell Council

Email: sandwell_enquiry@sandwell.gov.uk
Call: 0121 569 2266

Text: 07767 256873
Fax: 0121 569 5789

Write to: Sandwell Enquiry, PO Box 15825, Oldbury, B69 9EL

Dudley Council

Email: DisabHearing.Dachs@dudley.gov.uk

Call: 01384 813 462

Text: 07779 434 717
Minicom: 01384 230 025

Write to: Deaf Support Service, Brierley Hill Health and Social Care Centre, Venture Way Brierley Hill, DY5 1RU

Wolverhampton Council

Email: ilsott@wolverhampton.gov.uk
Call: 01902 553 666 Option 1

Fax: 01902 551 511

Write to: Neville Garratt Centre for Independent Living, City of Wolverhampton, Bell Street, Wolverhampton, WV1 3PR

Birmingham Council

Online referral form and message form

Phone: 0121 303 1234

Email: CSAdultSocialCare@birmingham.gov.uk

 

 

For queries relating to employment and support at work, Access to Work can be contacted directly through your local Job Centre Plus or using the details below:

Jobcentre Plus
Access to Work Operational Support Unit
Alexandra House
377 Cowbridge Road East
Cardiff
CF5 1WU

Phone: 02920 423 291
Minicom: 02920 644 886
Fax: 02920 423 342
Email: atwosu.cardiff@jobcentreplus.gsi.gov.uk
Website: www.direct.gov.uk

Useful websites:

British Cochlear Implant Group
www.bcig.org.uk

Deafblind UK
www.deafblind.org.uk

Hearing Dogs for Deaf People
www.hearingdogs.org.uk

Royal National Institute for the Deaf
www.rnid.org.uk

Sense (for deafblind people)
https://www.sense.org.uk/

www.rnidconnevans.co.uk

www.connevans.co.uk

www.actiondeafness.org.uk

www.hearinglink.org

www.signhealth.org.uk

www.suddenhearingloss.support

www.sdca.co.uk

www.deafplus.org

www.buzz.org.uk

www.wmfs.net/our-services/safe-and-well

Contacts

Email: swb-tr.audiology@nhs.net

Facebook: SWB Audiology

 

For Hearing services and James Preston
0121 507 4875

Hearing Services Centre
City Hospital
Dudley Road
Birmingham
B18 7QH

James Preston Health Centre
61 Holland Road
Sutton Coldfield
B72 1RL

Lyng Centre for Health and Social Care, Neptune Health Park and Rowley Regis Hospital clinics
0121 612 2366

Sandwell Audiology Service
Lyng Centre for Health & Social Care
Frank Fisher Way
West Bromwich
B70 7AW

Neptune Health Park
Sedgley Road West
Tipton
DY4 8PX

Rowley Regis Hospital
Moor Lane
Rowley Regis
B65 8DA

 

 

 

Newborn Hearing Screening Programme
0121 507 5902

Mincom users can contact us using Typetalk by using the prefix 18001 before the phone number. For more information about Typetalk click here.

Hearing Services Centre

City Hospital

Dudley Road

Birmingham

B18 7QH

 

 

 

Sandwell Audiology Service

Lyng Centre for Health & Social Care

Frank Fisher Way

West Bromwich

B70 7AW

 

Neptune Health Park

Sedgley Road West

Tipton

DY4 8PX

 

Rowley Regis Hospital

Moor Lane

Rowley Regis

B65 8DA

 

 

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