The decision to choose a cochlear implant for a child has life-long implications for both children and their families, the Ida Institute reports, and to assist families of children with cochlear implants, the Institute has introduced the new My Turn to Talk online tool.
The newest addition to Ida Institute’s Tool Room is intended to provide a simple step-by-step process that enables parents to identify questions and concerns to discuss with their child’s hearing care professional as the child grows and needs changes. The tool aims to empower parents to make their voices heard at critical points for decision making throughout the CI journey.
“With the My Turn to Talk Tool, we help parents articulate their questions and concerns so they can get the information and support they need to make the best choices for their child,” said Ida Institute Managing Director Lise Lotte Bundesen. “It is a tool that can be used again and again before appointments, continuing to provide value even as children grow and parents become more engaged in the CI process.”
The My Turn to Talk tool is also intended to benefit hearing care professionals by opening a dialogue that helps them gain a better understanding of parents’ perspectives and experiences that may impact decision-making. Hearing care professionals have the opportunity to address and clarify a family’s concerns so that parents are better informed before making decisions for their child.
The two-part tool is said to be easy to use. In Part One, the Communication Rings give parents a simple, visual way to prioritize the most important people with whom their child communicates. Parents drag and drop post-it notes indicating people that are part of their child’s life into the various rings of the circle that range from “most important” and “very important” to less important individuals who are present on a regular basis. In Part Two, parents complete a variety of open-ended questions relevant to their child’s situation.
To better prepare their child’s hearing care professional to address the topics that are important to them, parents can email the completed communications overview and questions in advance of their appointments.
The My Turn to Talk tool was developed by a collaborative, multi-disciplinary group of professionals who participated in the Ida seminar, “Successes, Gaps and Challenges in CI Rehabilitation: The CI Journey for Children and their Families.” The 21 participants from 14 countries included audiologists, teachers of the deaf, surgeons, and a psychologist.
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