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Stage 4 restrictions - we're open but it's different

Stage 4 restrictions - we're open but it's different

Posted by MAC on 12 August 2020

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During stage 4 restrictions in Melbourne we are open but it’s not business as usual.

We have changed our hearing services delivery model for stage 4 restrictions.  We are open for telehealth services and urgent face-to-face services. We can provide hearing services via telehealth to most clients including pensioners, veterans, and other eligible clients funded under the Hearing Services Program (HSP) and people under WorkSafe, TAC, DVA and NDIS.  We can also provide hearing services for people with Chronic Disease Management (CDM) plans.

Telehealth can be done by phone or video call. For people with hearing loss, a video call will make communication easier as they will be able to see the speaker's face and use visual cues such as lip reading. In addition, for some people with newer hearing aids, we may be able to program the hearing aids "remotely' via the internet.  We can do this during a telehealth appointment.

Hearing services that we can do by telehealth include:

  • reviewing your progress with hearing aids 
  • help you to troubleshoot an issue with the hearing aids
  • counselling and tactics for better verbal communication especially if someone is wearing a face mask
  • discuss new hearing aids
  • discuss devices that can assist with hearing the TV better
  • tinnitus counselling and support

Hearing services that we may be able to do by telehealth and RemoteCare include:

  • fine-tuning a new hearing aid fitting
  • adjusting the programming in the hearing aids to address any changing needs

We are offering some hearing services with minimal face-to-face contact and these include:

  • hearing aid repairs
  • new hearing aid fittings
    • hearing aids programmed and
      • if experienced hearing aid user the aids can be picked up
      • if a new hearing aid user, a short face-to-face for any adjustments and instruction on use
    • all hearing aid fittings followed by telehealth appointment
    • any issues with physical fit of the aids may need to be addressed with a short face-to-face appointment
    • a subsequent face-to-face appointment after the lockdown will be necessary to finalise the fitting of the hearing aids

Many hearing services can only be done face-to-face. These include: 

  • hearing tests, which must be done using calibrated equipment and in sound treated conditions
  • hearing aid fittings need a face-to-face appointment to measure the amount of sound in the ear canal (we are deferring this to after lockdown) or if there are issues with physical fit
  • taking impressions for custom hearing aids 
  • otoscopy - checking the ear canal and ear drum. 

If we do see you face-to-face for an urgent appointment, we are reducing the time spent in the appointment and where we can will do part of the service by telehealth.

We are doing our best to be as safe as possible and to minimise the transmission of COVID-19 when delivering face-to-face services .  In summary, when doing face-to-face hearing services we are: 

  • practicing strict infection control 
  • physically distancing and managing the number of clients in a room 
  • adapting our service delivery procedures 
  • telehealth hearing services 
  • remote care hearing aid adjustments 
  • reduced face-to-face time during appointments 
  • kerbside service

 Whilst some of our hearing services may be delivered in a different way as we embrace new service delivery models, we are still committed to providing our clients with the best hearing care.  

 You can contact us on 1300 761 021.