Sensaphonics president Michael Santucci, (left), receiving the 2009 Safe In Sound Award from Jim Newhall, PhD, NIOSH director of Extramural Programs. (Photo credit: Jack Foreman)

Sensaphonics Hearing Conservation Inc, Chicago, has won the inaugural Safe In Sound award for innovation in hearing loss prevention.

The Safe In Sound Awards are cosponsored by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and the National Hearing Conservation Association (NHCA), and honor companies that have shown dedication to preventing noise-induced hearing loss through excellent practices in the work environment. NIOSH is part of the federal government’s Centers for Disease Control within the Department of Health and Human Services, the federal agency responsible for preventing work-related injury and illness.

“To be recognized by NIOSH and the NHCA for our work in high-risk, unregulated environments like the music industry is incredible," says Michael Santucci, AuD, the company’s founder and president. "It’s an affirmation that we’ve been doing the right thing – developing new products and technologies, educating our customers, and mentoring audiologists in how to help musicians have longer, healthier careers by preserving their hearing.”

The award was given at the 34th annual Hearing Conservation Conference in Atlanta.

The awards committee says the company was chosen for being a pioneer in combining products, audiology services, and education to reach their hearing loss prevention goals, for a culture of innovation and educational outreach, and for having raised awareness of the importance of hearing loss prevention among audiologists, the music industry, and the general public.

Sensaphonics’ recent product developments include the patent-pending 3-D Active Ambient IEM System and dB Check in-ear sound level analyzer. The company has educated the music industry on hearing loss prevention through lectures, published articles, research studies, and its Golden Circle training seminars for audiologists. Sensaphonics operates a musicians’ hearing clinic, providing individual testing and counseling at its headquarters.

Founded in 1985, the company designs and manufactures custom-fitted products to achieve safe, high-resolution audio in mission-critical applications. In addition to their primary customer base in the music industry, the products are used exclusively on all manned NASA missions and by all Indy Racing League drivers.