June 6, 2007

Cochlear Americas, a leader in cochlear implant technology, announces the launch of Sound Partnership(TM), a group of initiatives that provides hearing device implant centers with more time to counsel and treat patients.

Sound Partnership’s five-part, integrated clinical solutions program is intended to reduce technical and administrative demands for treating hearing impaired patients and allow more time for direct patient care.

"As the demand for implanted hearing technology increases, we are looking for ways to support our clinics. We believe that the Sound Partnership program offers interested centers individualized recommendations to improve patient flow and reduce non-reimbursed administrative aftercare of their recipients. This program will enable clinics to focus on what is most important: offering patients the highest level of direct patient care," Chris Smith, president, Cochlear Americas, says.

Sound Partnership’s Hear Always, direct patient technical support model was constructed to provide patients with technical troubleshooting, warranty and maintenance support directly from Cochlear Americas. Nationwide, 20 clinics participated in the Hear Always pilot program during the second half of 2006, according to a company statement. Clinics that participate in the program have saved an average of four hours of non-reimbursable time per week, the statement continued, translating into a savings of $3 million of non-reimbursable expenses across the nation annually.

Sound Partnership’s Business Solutions program includes Cochlear’s newly launched online purchasing experience.  MyCochlear.com is an online ordering system where clinicians can order Cochlear products and custom configured implant systems.

As an industry, cochlear implant manufacturers are only treating about 10 percent of the patients who can benefit from the technology, according to the American Journal of Audiology. The Sound Partnership group of programs has been designed to create awareness of implantable hearing devices and to help drive efficiencies at cochlear implant centers across the nation.

Source: Cochlear Americas (www.cochlear.com)