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November 19, 2004

Indigenous cochlear implant taking shape

From: News Today - India - Nov 19, 2004

Indian Society of Otology meet inaugurated

Indigenous cochlear implant taking shape

NT Bureau Chennai, Nov 19:

Hearing ability is vital for one's success at school, at jobs and elsewhere in life. So, such a vital sense should be safeguarded with utmost care and protection, Surjit Singh Barnala, State Governor, said today.

Speaking at the inauguration of the 13th annual conference of Indian Society of Otology (ISO) in Chennai, Barnala said 'hearing is so important that the ability to hear determines one's ability to communicate and reciprocate with others'.

He also said it was shocking to note that roughly four per cent of every 1000 children born in India suffered from profound hearing loss. WHO estimated that worldwide about 250 million people - nearly 4.2 per cent of the total world population had hearing impairments and that nearly two-thirds of them were in developing countries like India and China.

He added that associations like ISO should take the 'onerous' responsibility of educating people about preventive measures, he said and hoped that conferences like the present one would formulate measures to curb and screen early deduction of hearing disabilities in new born babies and bring in innovative treatment techniques at affordable cost.

Dr P G Viswanathan, president, ISO, stated that it was important to have a well coordinated and successfully implemented nationwide newborn hearing screening programme and added that ISO was in the process of developing an indigenous cochlear implant with the help of scientists, headed by President A P J Abdul Kalam.

He also said the vision of ISO was to train surgeons to the highest standards by using the best educational methods and processes and to have advance surgical knowledge and care by research and development of new, safe and effective surgical techniques.

Dr K K Ramalingam, chairman, ISO, also spoke on the occasion.

© 2004 News Today - India