The UK industry association representing hearing instrument manufacturers is announcing a change of name: formerly the British Hearing Aid Manufacturers Association, it has become the British and Irish Hearing Instrument Manufacturers Association (BIHIMA). BIHIMA enters this new phase with a rebrand of its logo and a new website to follow by the end of the year.
BIHIMA represents the hearing instrument manufacturers of Britain and Ireland, working in partnership with other professional, trade, regulatory and consumer organizations within the health care and charitable sectors. BIHIMA raises consumer awareness about the latest hearing technology, and aims to influence government and policy makers to improve the lives of people with hearing difficulties.
Recently appointed chairman, Paul Surridge, has been working with the board to establish a new strategy for the Association, which includes the change of name. The board has decided that the substitution of “Aid” for “Instrument” better reflects its commitment to changing public perceptions and to combatting the stigma attached to the term “hearing aids.”
The change of name also mirrors the fact that there have been some dramatic technological advancements in recent years which have had a major impact on the devices offered to consumers. This is reflected in the new tagline attributed to the association: The Voice of Hearing Technology. The rebrand also brings the UK Association closer to its European counterpart, the European Hearing Instrument Manufacturers Association (EHIMA).
The board, which is made up of the chief executives of key member organizations (Starkey Hearing Technologies, Sivantos, Widex, Phonak, Oticon, GN ReSound and Unitron), is looking forward to implementing the new strategic direction led by chairman, Paul Surridge.
“I am looking forward to working with BIHIMA as we unfold a new strategy for the Association,” said Surridge in a recent announcement. “Our aim is to work more closely with other bodies and charities in the hearing sector and importantly, through a dedicated campaign, help to raise consumer awareness of the importance of regular hearing tests and address the stigma associated with the wearing of hearing instruments.”
Surridge brings significant experience to BIHIMA, having served as chief executive of the Sight Care Group for the past 18 years, a business and product resource organization for UK opticians, and as a non-executive chairman of the national charity Vision Aid Overseas.
Image credits: BIHIMA; © Steve Allen | Dreamstime.com