Recently, Sugata Bhattacharjee, AuD, a contributing writer and editorial advisory board member for The Hearing Review, sat down with Abram Bailey, AuD, president of Hearing Tracker Inc, Austin, Tex. Dr Bailey is a graduate of Vanderbilt University and has 5 years of experience working as a clinical audiologists and clinic manager in New Zealand. As an audiologist who has obtained a good working knowledge of database-backed Web-applications and responsive Web-design, he recently led a number of learning-sessions and workshops at AudiologyNOW! with a focus on Hearing Tracker.
Dr Bhattacharjee: Good morning Abram, and thanks for meeting with me today.
Dr Bailey: Hello, Sugata. Good to be with you.
Q: Let’s talk about Hearing Tracker. Briefly, what is it?
Bailey: Hearing Tracker is a Web site that allows hearing care professionals to track their fitting-outcomes in real time. It also serves as an online resource for consumers to help them identify top-performing dispensing professionals in their area.
Q: How does the Website determine which professionals are the best?
Bailey: At the conclusion of their hearing aid evaluation period, patients are asked to review their devices on Hearing Tracker. Patients rate their hearing aids on multiple dimensions (like speech-in-quiet and speech-in-noise). Patients are also asked to review their experience with the audiologist, using a client-centered survey. Getting back to your question, dispensing professionals on Hearing Tracker are rated based on the results of each of these surveys.
Q: Do you think it’s fair to rate the hearing care professionals based on performance of the devices they fit?
Bailey: There is a strong correlation between dispensing protocols and successful patient outcomes. If an audiologist or hearing instrument specialist fits high quality devices and utilizes a comprehensive protocol, they should be rewarded with above average patient outcomes.
Q: That makes sense. So, as an audiologist, how do I know my patient reviews are legitimate? How do I know my competitors aren’t leaving reviews for my practice?
Bailey: With Hearing Tracker, the dispensing professional is responsible for creating a “review ticket” for each patient. No one can review you without having a ticket. This puts you in control of who leaves reviews.
Q: Ok, but what if one of my patients leaves a bad review for the hearing aids I’ve fitted?
Bailey: Good question. This is bound to happen from time to time. Imagine you’re looking for a product on Amazon or a restaurant on Yelp. Even the top ranked products and restaurants will have a few bad reviews. It’s all about being the best available option. In the end, consumers will choose the top ranked hearing care professional with a score of 85% over an professional with no reviews at all.
Q: Let’s consider a worst-case scenario. What if one of my patients quotes a price in their review?
Bailey: As soon as one of your patients completes a hearing aid review, you will be alerted via email. You will have the option to flag the review to instantly remove it from your account.
Q: So, tell me, why should I sign up?
Bailey: We are currently seeing about 2000 unique visitors per week on HearingTracker.com. By analyzing our visitor flow we can see that users are browsing hearing aids and attempting to connect with local hearing care professionals. If you aren’t on Hearing Tracker yet, you are missing out on these valuable leads.
Bhattacharjee: Sounds very interesting. Thanks for meeting with me today, Abram.