Wednesday, October 17, 2007

A visit to an institution

Today on a friends request I visited a famous government institute who does cochlear implant.My friend needed to test a new hearing aid as her implanted child is still not able to hear with the implant.The audiologist cum dealer showed the aid which was lesser known and seemed not too competent.What pained me the state of cochlear implanted children who were taking speech therapy there.The therapy was so bad and the therapist was giving visual clues to the child.He did look a bit uncomfortable when he saw the way I spoke to my girl, I must admit.With the state of the art gadgetry on the child's head were they not supposed to get the best quality sound and speak?Why were they not still able to speak?What was lacking?They say implant is the answer.My audiologist had proposed it a number of times.I concluded that it is not the aid but the speech therapy that provided speech to the child.When the 2 mothers heard my girl speak they looked amazed, they looked longingly at my girl.I was so tempted to correct the therapist and advise the mother but couuld not as They were bound by protocol as they came from a lower background and I could not due to the institution.Why can't we invest in better speech therapist .Is the number of implants you do more important as that they give you the experience, but please not at the cost of these innocent children and their vulnerable parents.Cochlear implant works, but only when done properly and still GOOD speech therapy has to be given.I was lucky I found Alaka teacher.I wish she could teach all or we have more like her.

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