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Posts Tagged ‘National Hearing Conservation Association’


Monday, April 7th, 2014

National Hearing Conservation Association (NHCA) Announces 2014 Executive Council

Westminster, CO – April 7, 2014 - The National Hearing Conservation Association (NHCA) has announced the members of its 2014 Executive Council.

“The new NHCA Executive Council represents the diversity of our membership and reflects the interdisciplinary nature of the practice of hearing loss prevention,” said NHCA incoming President Beth Cooper. “Our members are actively engaged or currently studying in fields such as audiology, occupational health nursing, industrial hygiene, and noise control engineering and come from all sectors of industry, academia, government and armed forces, equipment manufacturers, and providers of audiometric monitoring services.”

Organized in 1976, the NHCA has grown to a robust organization with approximately 260 members who are passionate about the prevention of hearing loss due to noise and environmental factors, Cooper noted.

The new Executive Council conducted its first meeting in March at the NHCA’s 39th Annual Hearing Conservation Conference, held in Las Vegas. The members of the Council are listed below, along with their brief biographies.

  • President – Beth Cooper, PE, INCE, Bd. Cert, Fellow INCE. Beth Cooper is an acoustical engineer and hearing conservationist with more than 30 years of experience in acoustics, noise control, hearing loss prevention, and occupational health. Her accomplishments include the design, construction, and management of several acoustical facilities and major industrial noise control projects and the development of unique multimedia educational resources and applications that energize occupational hearing conservation programs. She currently serves as a subject matter expert, providing technical support and training for the occupational health and engineering communities at NASA’s fifteen field centers.
  • President Elect – Kristy Casto, Ph.D., CCC-A. Kristen (Kristy) Casto is an active-duty Army audiologist currently assigned to the Office of the Army Surgeon General where she serves as deputy audiology and hearing conservation consultant to the Army Surgeon General. LTC Casto earned an Au.D. from Central Michigan University and a Ph.D. in Human Factors Engineering from Virginia Tech. LTC Casto is certified by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), is a Fellow of the American Academy of Audiology (AAA) and is   also a member of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society and the Military Audiology Association.
  • Immediate Past President – Jennifer Tufts, Ph.D., CCC-A. Jennifer Tufts is an associate professor in the Department of Communication Sciences at the University of Connecticut. She holds a B.A. in music and mathematics from Holy Cross College in Worcester, MA, and an M.S. and Ph.D. in audiology from Penn State University. She holds the Clinical Certificate of Competence in audiology from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) and is currently licensed to practice audiology in Connecticut.
  • Secretary/Treasurer – Nancy Wojcik, MS. Nancy is an epidemiologist in the Occupational & Public Health Division of ExxonMobil Biomedical Sciences, Inc., located in Annandale, NJ. Nancy has over 25 years of experience, earned an M.S. degree from Seton Hall University, and has published on epidemiological methods for cohort mortality studies. She manages the company’s employee health surveillance system and has conducted cohort mortality and cancer incidence studies of North American petrochemical workers.
  • Director of Education – Marjorie McCullagh, Ph.D., RN, PHCNS-BC, COHN-S. Marjorie McCullagh has worked in educator positions for more than 30 years, currently serving as nurse-educator and researcher at the University of Michigan. Dr. McCullagh’s program of research focuses on prevention of NIHL among farm operators, particularly through use of hearing protection devices.
  • Director of Marketing and Public Relations – Marvin “Joel” Jennings, M.S., CCC-A. Joel is on active duty with the US Army, where he most recently served as the Hearing Program Manager for Fort Bliss, Texas. He holds degrees from the University of Texas, and is currently pursuing a Master’s of Public Health from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Prior to serving on active duty, Joel worked in many settings in the hearing industry, including working for a major hearing aid company. He currently serves as President on the executive board of the Military Audiology Association, holds a certificate of Clinical Competence form the American Speech-Language Hearing Association and is a Fellow in the American Academy of Audiology.
  • Director of Membership – Cheryl Nadeau, M.Ed., F-AAA, CPS/A. Cheryl Nadeau is the Senior Occupational Audiologist for Workplace Integra, Inc., Greensboro, NC. She is a Certified Professional Supervisor of the Audiometric Program (CPS/A), a Certified Course Director for the Council for Accreditation in Occupational Hearing Conservation (CAOHC), Board Certified in Audiology by The American Board of Audiology and a member of the American Academy of Audiologists (AAA). Cheryl holds a B.S.Ed. in Communication Sciences and Disorders and a M.Ed. in Audiology from the University of Georgia, Athens. She is in the process of obtaining her Doctor of Audiology degree at A.T. Still University, Arizona School of Health Sciences.
  • Director of Communications – Cory Portnuff, Au.D., Ph.D. Dr. Cory Portnuff is a clinical audiologist in Denver with an Au.D. (Doctor of Audiology) and a Ph.D. in Hearing Science from the University of Colorado at Boulder. His research focuses on noise-induced hearing loss in children, with a particular emphasis in understanding music-induced hearing loss and MP3 players using health belief modeling. Dr. Portnuff is also the President of the H.E.A.R. Project, a Colorado non-profit organization that provides support for families of children with hearing loss.
  • Member Delegate – Marilyn Morgan, RN, COHC. Marilyn began professional services in occupational hearing conservation in 2010 as a hearing conservationist. The employer, Take Care Health Systems, provides the occupational health services for the Golden, CO site. Her professional involvement includes past board memberships in nursing organizations and educational organizations on both the local and state levels. She has provided volunteer and participant services for both NHCA and CAOHC.
  • Member Delegate – Kara Cave. CPT Kara Cave is currently the Chief of the Fort Campbell, KY Hearing Program. Her previous assignments include: Walter Reed Army Medical Center, Washington, D.C; Army Research Laboratory, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland; 10th Combat Support Hospital, Baghdad, Iraq; and Fort Bliss, Texas. She received her B.A. from Boston College in 1999 and her Ph.D. in Audiology from James Madison University in 2005.
  • PSP Member Delegate – Sandra MacLean-Uberuaga, MA, F-AAA, CSP/A. Sandra MacLean Uberuaga has a Bachelor’s of Science from the University of Washington in Speech and Hearing Sciences and a Master’s in Audiology and Pathology. Sandra is president Alaska Occupational Audiology & Health Services, Inc., as well as Washington Audiology Services. She is a six time recipient of the NHCA golden lobe award. She is a member of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, American Society of Safety Engineers, the Acoustical Society of America as well as a fellow of the American Academy of Audiology. She has been an active course director for the Council for Accreditation in Occupational Hearing Conservation (CAOHC) and is a Professional Supervisor by CAOHC.
  • Commercial Member Delegate – Scott Lake, MSE, BMSE, GMI. Scott Lake is the Engineering Projects Manager at Westone Laboratories, Inc. located in Colorado Springs, CO. He has spent most of his 20+ year professional career in the area of noise and vibration control in the automotive industry; with specialization in the study of Sound Quality where he was a regularly invited speaker to the biannual Noise & Vibration Conference of the Society of Automotive Engineers. He currently has responsibilities in product definition, design and development for Westone Laboratories’ Hearing Protection Device Products.
  • Associate Member Delegate: David Stern, C-OHC – David Stern has worked in the hearing conservation field since 1995 in a variety of positions from Tech to Lead Tech to Operations manager and is experienced in testing, training, noise surveys, custom HPD’s, otoacoustic emissions and more He now works for Boeing as a Health Services Administrator in the Pre-Employment Medical Dept and continue to support Boeing’s Hearing Conservation Program by being a member of the Hearing Conservation Program Steering Committee.

About the National Hearing Conservation Association (NHCA)

The mission of the NHCA is to prevent hearing loss due to noise and other environmental factors in all sectors of society. NHCA’s membership includes audiologists, researchers, industrial hygienists, physicians and occupational health nurses, educators, professional service organizations, safety professionals, engineers, audio professionals, students, and others who have dedicated their work to the advancement of hearing loss prevention. For more information, visit http://www.hearingconservation.org.

 


Tuesday, February 4th, 2014

Gordon Hempton to Receive National Hearing Conservation Association’s Media Award

Westminster, CO February 4, 2014 — Gordon Hempton, an acoustic ecologist with a passion for the pursuit of quiet places, will be presented with the National Hearing Conservation Association’s Media Award in Las Vegas in March, 2014.

The NHCA Media Award recognizes the efforts of writers and/or producers of news features that serve to heighten public awareness of the hazards of noise. The NHCA honors Gordon Hempton for his interview with Krista Tippet entitled “The Last Quiet Places.” It was first broadcast July 4, 2013, on Krista Tippet’s show, On Being, which is broadcast on National Public Radio. In the interview, Gordon takes listeners on a soundscape journey as he argues that silence, far from being a luxury, is an essential requirement of a full life, that it is an endangered species, and that quiet is the think tank of the soul. The interview can be downloaded or podcast by visiting http://www.onbeing.org/program/last-quiet-places/4557

Mr. Hempton has circled the globe three times in pursuit of the Earth’s rarest natural sounds. His sound portraits that record quickly vanishing natural soundscapes have been featured in People magazine and a national PBS television documentary, Vanishing Dawn Chorus, which earned him an Emmy. He provides professional audio services to media producers, including Microsoft, Smithsonian, National Geographic, and Discovery Channel. Recipient of awards from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Rolex Awards for Enterprise, he is co-author of One Square Inch of Silence: One Man’s Quest to Preserve Quiet (Free Press/Simon & Schuster, 2010).

The NHCA’s presentation of the Media Award to Gordon Hempton will take place at an awards luncheon during the NHCA’s 39th Annual Conference, to be held March 13-15, 2014, in Las Vegas, Nevada. For more information about the NHCA Conference, “Stop Gambling With Your Hearing,” go to http://www.hearingconservation.org.

About the National Hearing Conservation Association (NHCA)

The mission of the NHCA is to prevent hearing loss due to noise and other environmental factors in all sectors of society. NHCA’s membership includes audiologists, researchers, industrial hygienists, physicians and occupational health nurses, educators, professional service organizations, safety professionals, engineers, audio professionals, students, and others who have dedicated their work to the advancement of hearing loss prevention.

Visit the NHCA online at http://www.hearingconservation.org or call 1-303-224-9022. Follow the NHCA on Twitter at http://twitter.com/nhcaorg, on Facebook at http://bit.ly/vLRg5, and on LinkedIn at http://bit.ly/3X2DfT.


Tuesday, February 4th, 2014

Richard Danielson, PhD, to receive National Hearing Conservation Association’s Outstanding Hearing Conservationist Award

Westminster, CO February 4, 2014 — The National Hearing Conservation Association (NHCA) will recognize audiologist and educator Richard W. Danielson, PhD, with its Outstanding Hearing Conservationist Award in Las Vegas in March 2014. This prestigious award, established in 1990, recognizes outstanding contributions and achievements in the field of hearing conservation. The NHCA is pleased to honor Dr. Richard Danielson for his distinguished career as an enthusiastic educator and his productive contributions to national efforts to prevent noise-related hearing loss.

Dr. Danielson is an Associate Professor at Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, with dual appointments in the Department of Otolaryngology — Head and Neck Surgery and in the Center for Space Medicine. Since 2003, he has been the Manager for Audiology and Hearing Conservation at NASA-Johnson Space Center. There, he leads a NASA program aimed at preventing noise-induced hearing loss (during spaceflight and ground-based missions) among NASA’s astronauts, pilots, and other employees. He also collaborates with NASA and international partners towards resolution of auditory and acoustic issues on the International Space Station.

Prior to his work with NASA, Colonel (Ret.) Danielson held several senior leadership positions in the U.S. Army during his 28-year career, which included serving during Operation Desert Storm as the Officer-in-Charge of the first Audiology Task Force ever deployed to a combat theater. In addition to his exceptional military career, Dr. Danielson has held numerous national leadership roles in several audiology-related professional organizations.  He has chaired the Council for Accreditation in Occupational Hearing Conservation (CAOHC) and served for 13 years on its national council, where he was instrumental in revising CAOHC’s curricula for certification and recertification of course directors and professional supervisors of audiometric monitoring. Dr. Danielson recently served as Chair of the American Academy of Audiology Foundation Board of Trustees, and has been the president of the Texas Academy of Audiology, the Washington Society of Audiology, and the Military Audiology Association, He has held faculty appointments at 11 universities, where he has taught, supervised research, published, and mentored doctoral candidates, graduate students, medical residents, and audiology interns.

NHCA’s presentation of the Outstanding Hearing Conservationist Award recognizes Dr. Danielson’s lifelong campaign to persuade others to become, what he calls, “evangelists for hearing conservation,” sharing a truly devoted enthusiasm for hearing loss prevention.

Dr. Danielson’s acceptance of the Outstanding Hearing Conservationist Award will take place at an awards luncheon during the NHCA’s 39th Annual Conference, to be held March 13-15, 2014, in Las Vegas. Many of his colleagues and associates will be on hand to honor and recognize this prestigious achievement. For more information about the NHCA Conference, “Stop Gambling With Your Hearing,” go to http://www.hearingconservation.org.

About the National Hearing Conservation Association (NHCA)

The mission of the NHCA is to prevent hearing loss due to noise and other environmental factors in all sectors of society. NHCA’s membership includes audiologists, researchers, industrial hygienists, physicians and occupational health nurses, educators, professional service organizations, safety professionals, engineers, audio professionals, students, and others who have dedicated their work to the advancement of hearing loss prevention.

Visit the NHCA online at http://www.hearingconservation.org or call 1-303-224-9022. Follow the NHCA on Twitter at http://twitter.com/nhcaorg, on Facebook at http://bit.ly/vLRg5, and on LinkedIn at http://bit.ly/3X2DfT.


Tuesday, September 17th, 2013

NHCA Scholarship Foundation Announces 2014 Student Conference Awards Available

The Scholarship Foundation of the National Hearing Conservation Association (NHCA) is pleased to announce the availability of a limited number of student conference awards for the 38th Annual NHCA Conference, to be held March, 13-15, 2014, in Las Vegas, NV.  In addition to outstanding technical presentations on hearing loss prevention, there will be numerous opportunities to attend in-depth workshops, poster sessions, and discussion groups.  We have a great program in store, as well as a fantastic Friday night get-together.

The Student Conference Award (SCA) includes paid registration to two workshops (March 13), the annual conference (March 14 & 15), lunches, social activities, and a stipend for travel expenses. This one-time Award is available to students who are actively pursuing a graduate degree in a discipline related to hearing conservation and who are enrolled at least half-time in an accredited university program.  Previous recipients of the NHCA Student Conference Award include masters and doctoral-level students in audiology, human factors engineering, industrial hygiene, and public health, from a variety of universities across the country.  Interested students may contact the NHCA office (303.224.9022) or visit the NHCA website for more information about the award and to download the 1-page application.  Completed application must be received in the NHCA office no later than November 4, 2013.  Students will be notified of the results by January 3, 2014.  Students who have previously received an SCA are not eligible.

Deadline to submit applications: November 4, 2013.

About the National Hearing Conservation Association (NHCA)

The mission of the NHCA is to prevent hearing loss due to noise and other environmental factors in all sectors of society. NHCA provides networking, resources and professional development opportunities to improve skills, practices, and services in hearing loss prevention. NHCA’s membership includes audiologists, researchers, industrial hygienists, educators, professional service organizations, safety professionals, medical professionals, engineers, audio professionals, students, and others who have dedicated their work to the advancement of hearing loss prevention.

For more information about the National Hearing Conservation Association, visit the NHCA online at http://www.hearingconservation.org or call 1-303-224-9022. Follow the NHCA on Twitter at www.twitter.com/nhcaorg, on Facebook at http://bit.ly/vLRg5, and on LinkedIn at http://bit.ly/3X2DfT.


Tuesday, March 6th, 2012

National Hearing Conservation Association Recognizes Laurie Wells, Au.D., With Prestigious Michael Beall Threadgill Award

Westminster, CO ― March 6, 2012 ― Laurie Wells, Au.D., Manager of Audiology for Associates in Acoustics, Inc., received the Michael Beall Threadgill Award during a ceremony at the annual conference of the National Hearing Conservation Association (NHCA). This award, established in 1985, recognizes an individual whose committed leadership and insight has furthered the NHCA’s mission of preventing hearing loss from environmental factors in all sectors of society.

Over the past two decades, Dr. Wells has been strong proponent of hearing conservation, both within and beyond the NHCA. Dr. Wells has represented the American Academy of Audiology on the Council for Accreditation in Occupational Hearing Conservation (CAOHC) since 2007; currently, she is the Vice-Chair of Education for CAOHC. She has provided occupational audiology services to local employers while employed at the University of Northern Colorado Speech-Pathology and Audiology Clinic. Her efforts are by no means confined to the United States: she has provided hearing conservation education and implementation in Belgium, China, Czech Republic, France, Hungary, India, Spain and the West Indies.

In 1999, Dr. Wells accepted the role of Secretary on the NHCA Executive Council; she remained on the council for the next seven years, serving as Vice-President, President-Elect, President, and finally Past President in 2007. During this time she planned and participated in multiple NHCA Excellence Seminars, acted as Program Chair for two consecutive conferences, contributed to and served as Associate Editor for the NHCA Spectrum, and served on multiple task forces within NHCA.

“Dr. Wells has selflessly donated her time and energy to our organization, and to the cause of hearing loss prevention. She exemplifies the ideals of the NHCA with her dedication,” said Laura Kauth, NHCA President and Chair of the Nominations Task Force.

Dr. Wells was also recognized as the 2011 Outstanding Lecturer for her thought-provoking presentation at the 2011 conference, titled “From Here to There to Hear”.

About the National Hearing Conservation Association (NHCA)

The mission of the NHCA is to prevent hearing loss due to noise and other environmental factors in all sectors of society. NHCA provides networking, resources and professional development opportunities to improve skills, practices, and services in hearing loss prevention. NHCA’s membership includes audiologists, researchers, industrial hygienists, educators, professional service organizations, safety professionals, medical professionals, engineers, audio professionals, students, and others who have dedicated their work to the advancement of hearing loss prevention. For more information about the National Hearing Conservation Association, visit the NHCA online at http://www.hearingconservation.org or call 1-303-224-9022. Follow the NHCA on Twitter at http://twitter.com/nhcaorg, on Facebook at http://bit.ly/vLRg5, and on LinkedIn at http://bit.ly/3X2DfT.


Tuesday, January 25th, 2011

NHCA Responds To OSHA’s Withdrawal of Their Proposed Noise Control Interpretation

Westminster, Colo. – January 25, 2011 - On October 19, 2010, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) published a proposal to revise the interpretation of the noise standard. The revised interpretation would require noise control (administrative or engineering), where economically and technologically feasible, for work environments which expose employees to or above the permissible exposure limit of 90 dBA (eight hour time-weighted average). The basis for this initiative was the continuing occurrence of permanent, significant hearing loss in employees; the Bureau of Labor Statistics has reported 125,000 such cases since 2004. The National Hearing Conservation Association (NHCA) supported OSHA’s proposed interpretation as a significant step forward in reducing the incidence of work-induced hearing loss and other health conditions related to excessive noise exposure.

In response to feedback from manufacturers and their associations, legislators’ comments, and an executive order advising federal agencies to be mindful of the impact of regulations on economic growth, OSHA withdrew its proposed interpretation of economic feasibility. In a recent news release dated January 19, 2011, Dr. David Michaels, Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health, indicated that OSHA was still committed to the goal of reducing the incidence of work-related hearing loss; they were suspending work on this policy modification to study other approaches, such as greater outreach, compliance assistance, and additional stakeholder meetings to elicit input from manufacturers, as well as safety and health professionals.

While hearing conservation strategies such as education and effective, consistent use of personal hearing protection help to reduce the risk of injury from this hazard, they are meant to supplement, not replace, hazard abatement. Noise control is a crucial component of hearing loss prevention, and should be recognized as a primary strategy for effectively reducing the amount of noise exposure in the work environment.

NHCA continues to support OSHA’s efforts to comply with its Congressional mandate; to ensure safe and healthy working conditions for employees through the provision and enforcement of effective safety standards. While disappointed by the recent events, we are encouraged by Dr. Michaels’ confirmation that OSHA is not abandoning the cause of abating this pervasive workplace hazard. It is our hope that OSHA will continue to address the concerns surrounding noise control, and to emphasize the critical role it plays in preventing occupational noise-induced hearing loss.

About the National Hearing Conservation Association (NHCA)

The mission of the NHCA is to prevent hearing loss due to noise and other environmental factors in all sectors of society. NHCA’s membership includes audiologists, industrial hygienists, physicians and occupational health nurses, educators, researchers, professional service organizations, safety professionals, engineers, audio professionals, students, and others who have dedicated their work to the advancement of hearing loss prevention.

For more information about the National Hearing Conservation Association, visit the NHCA online at http://www.hearingconservation.org or call 1-303-224-9022. Follow the NHCA on Twitter at www.twitter.com/nhcaorg, on Facebook at http://bit.ly/vLRg5, and on LinkedIn at http://bit.ly/3X2DfT.

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Press contact: Don Goncalves, 1-781-793-9380, dgoncalves@tizinc.com


Tuesday, July 6th, 2010

National Hearing Conservation Association (NHCA) Announces Call for Papers for 36th Annual Conference

nhcaWestminster, Colo. ― July 6, 2010 ― The National Hearing Conservation Association (NHCA) announces a call for papers for presentations and posters for its 36th Annual Conference, to be held February 24-26, 2011 in Mesa, Arizona. The theme of the conference is “The Future of Hearing Conservation: Technology & Innovation.”

Paper submission topics should reflect NHCA’s mission of “prevention of hearing loss due to noise and other environmental factors in all sectors of society.” Presentations may address basic scientific research, applied research, practical applications of research results, or other findings or concepts which may enhance hearing loss prevention efforts.

Submissions are being solicited for Platform (Panel) Presentations and Poster Presentations. All proposals must be submitted electronically – either online or by e-mail.
• Platform (Panel) Presentations proposals are due July 31, 2010. To submit, visit: http://ht.ly/21J5N
• Poster Presentations proposals are due September 1, 2010. To submit, visit: http://ht.ly/21J5N

NHCA’s conference features three days of engaging workshops, presentations, panel discussions and poster presentations on current issues relevant to the practice of hearing loss prevention. Key topics include the latest research on:
• Occupational hearing loss
• Music-induced hearing loss
• Hearing loss after impulse noise
• Novel strategies for measuring noise risk and pre-clinical effects of noise on hearing
• Hearing protection device innovations
• Public and personal health issues related to hearing loss
• Hearing loss prevention training and education
• Health communication strategies

Over 300 professionals attend the NHCA annual conference for professional development and networking opportunities.

About the National Hearing Conservation Association (NHCA)
The mission of the NHCA is to prevent hearing loss due to noise and other environmental factors in all sectors of society. NHCA provides networking, resources and professional development opportunities to improve skills, practices and services for over 600 members. NHCA’s membership includes audiologists, researchers, industrial hygienists, educators, professional service organizations, safety professionals, medical professionals, engineers, audio professionals, students, and others who have dedicated their work to the advancement of hearing loss prevention.

For more information about the National Hearing Conservation Association, visit the NHCA online at http://www.hearingconservation.org or call 1-303-224-9022. Follow the NHCA on Twitter at www.twitter.com/nhcaorg, on Facebook at http://bit.ly/vLRg5, and on LinkedIn at http://bit.ly/3X2DfT.

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Public Relations contact, Boston:  Don Goncalves, dgoncalves@tizinc.com, 781-793-9380, for Tiziani Whitmyre Inc., http://www.tizinc.com/public-relations


Tuesday, January 26th, 2010

Dangerous Decibels Educator Training Workshop: A fun, interactive way to teach noise-induced hearing loss and tinnitus prevention

nhcaDangerous Decibels Educator Training Workshop
February 28, 2010 – March 1, 2010
Rosen Plaza Hotel, Orlando, FL
*Immediately following the NHCA Conference

Come to Orlando to learn a fun, interactive way to teach noise-induced hearing loss and tinnitus prevention.

Join us in Orlando for the Dangerous Decibels Educator Training Workshop.  We will prepare and equip you to present a K-12 classroom program that is effective at changing knowledge, attitudes, and intended behaviors in students regarding their hearing health.

dd_smallThis two-day workshop (16 hours) is lead by Oregon Health & Science University, Portland State University, and University of Northern Colorado hearing conservation, health communication, educational outreach experts. Participants will receive an educator kit with graphics, simulations, supplies, a script and a sound level meter needed to present the classroom program.

The workshop will include background information on hearing, anatomy, physics of sound, children and noise, etc. Instruction includes classroom management, hands-on activities, and an opportunity to deliver the program to instructors for critique and feedback.  Workshop instructors are available after the workshop for continued support and as a resource through email or phone.  We look forward to your participation!

For more details and registration go to: http://www.dangerousdecibels.orgteacher_guide or contact Linda Howarth at howarthl@oshu.edu.

If you are interested in attending this workshop you must register through the OHSU Foundation directly.  Registration for this event is not included in the NHCA Conference materials.

Click here for a printable registration form.

Deadline to register: February 1, 2010

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Public Relations contact, Boston: Tiziani Whitmyre Inc., http://www.tizinc.com/public-relations


Monday, December 7th, 2009

NHCA Recommendations to EPA on NRR Change Intend to Improve Utility of Hearing Protection Devices at Work and at Home

nhca_wname1

WESTMINSTER, Colo., Dec. 7, 2009 — In response to the recent announcement of the impending change to the Noise Reduction Rating (NRR) for hearing protection devices, the National Hearing Conservation Association (NHCA) has provided its recommendations to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Based on expert member input and review, NHCA’s recommendations are intended to improve the utility of hearing protection devices for occupational hearing conservation programs and for personal use.

“Noise-induced hearing loss is a progressive and permanent disease which has a pervasive impact on people’s lives. While noise control efforts are the preferred way to reduce occupational and community noise exposures and prevent hearing loss, many Americans depend on earplugs and earmuffs to protect their hearing,” said Rick Neitzel, PhD, CIH, NHCA President. “The current Noise Reduction Rating methodology is obsolete and needs to be updated to reflect a more real-world approach to hearing conservation. Also, the new NRR needs to account for the fact hearing protectors are used both in the workplace, where users should be trained on how to protect their hearing and how to wear protectors correctly, as well as recreationally, where users are likely to be less knowledgeable about how to best protect their hearing.”

In its letter, posted at http://bit.ly/7qnVhq, NHCA asks for two major changes to the EPA’s proposed legislation.

First, NHCA believes that the labeled values should be based on the ANSI S12.6-2008 Method B protocol, which accounts for hearing protectors fit by trained and naive hearing protection device (HPD) users alike.

“The EPA should also ensure that the de-rating of labeled values is eliminated from the new NRR scheme. Over the years, de-ratings have created a great deal of uncertainty and confusion that has diminished the effectiveness of hearing loss prevention programs in the United States,” said Neitzel.

Second, NHCA urges the EPA to revise and simplify the labeling of hearing protectors. This will help ensure that all users – and especially users who have not been trained on the proper use of hearing protectors – receive adequate protection when they use the devices.

“The required labels should be simplified, made more symbol-based, and provided in multiple languages to ensure that their correct use is clear for all users,” said Neitzel. “Supporting information, such as the performance of the protector at specific test frequencies, should be provided online, as a packaged insert or upon request from the manufacturer in order to further simplify package labeling.”

“NHCA is excited to work with the EPA to increase the effectiveness of hearing protectors sold and used in the United States by making the labeled values on hearing protectors more meaningful to end users. We feel that the proposed changes will help give Americans the protection from noise that they deserve, and will help reduce or eliminate the number of people who needlessly develop NIHL,” said Neitzel.

About the National Hearing Conservation Association [NHCA]

The mission of the National Hearing Conservation Association is to prevent hearing loss due to noise and other environmental factors in all sectors of society. NHCA provides networking, resources and professional development opportunities to improve skills, practices and services for over 600 members. NHCA’s membership includes audiologists, researchers, students, industrial hygienists, educators, professional service organizations, safety professionals, medical professionals, engineers, audio professionals and others who have dedicated their work to the advancement of hearing loss prevention. For more information about the National Hearing Conservation Association, visit us online at www.hearingconservation.org.

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Public Relations contact, Boston: Tiziani Whitmyre Inc., http://www.tizinc.com/public-relations


Monday, November 2nd, 2009

National Hearing Conservation Association Petitions OSHA to Lower Permissible Exposure Limits for Noise

nhca_wname1Westminster, CO ― November 2, 2009 ― Citing the fact that nearly 22 million American workers are exposed to hazardous noise on a daily basis and that occupational hearing loss continues to plague industry, the National Hearing Conservation Association (NHCA) has made a request to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to reduce the permissible exposure limit (PEL) for noise exposures.

 

“Noise-induced hearing loss is an insidious, permanent, and irreversible disease which has a tremendous negative impact on people’s lives. The good news is that this disease is 100% preventable,” said Rick Neitzel, PhD, CIH, NHCA President. “The bad news is that OSHA’s 30-year-old noise exposure regulation is not consistent with current scientific knowledge, is not uniformly applied across all industries, and has not proven effective in preventing noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL).”

 

NHCA has requested that OSHA lower the PEL in the Occupation Noise Standard 29 CFR 1910.95 from 90 dBA to 85 dBA, and the Action Level from 85 to 80 dBA. Citing recent research by NIOSH and other organizations, American workers face a considerable risk of NIHL associated with long-term work at the current PEL of 90 dBA and a 5 dB time/intensity exchange rate. NHCA has also requested that the time/intensity exchange rate be reduced from 5 to 3 dB.

 

In the letter, NHCA also requests that OSHA extend the PEL to other industries, such as construction, agriculture, oil and gas drilling and servicing, and shipbuilding, that are not covered by the existing regulation. NHCA also asks OSHA to rescind a policy (OSHA Field Operations Manual, 3/2009) which permits exposures up to 100 dBA without requiring implementation of noise controls.

 

“Nearly every other nation on earth has adopted a more protective 85 dBA exposure limit – which means that U.S. workers have a substantially greater risk of developing noise-induced hearing loss than do the workers of almost every other nation,” said Neitzel. “Also, workers in industries like construction, agriculture, and oil and gas drilling are currently not covered by an effective regulation, which is unacceptable, given the high levels of noise exposure associated with these industries.”

 

“The National Hearing Conservation Association is a multidisciplinary organization committed to the prevention of hearing loss, and as such is uniquely positioned to advocate for contemporary U.S. noise exposure regulations,” said Neitzel. “We feel that the proposed changes will help give American workers the protection that they deserve, and bring workplace noise regulations in the US in line with current scientific knowledge about noise and noise-induced hearing loss.”

 

NHCA’s letter to OSHA can be found online at: http://bit.ly/42a3GT.

 

About the National Hearing Conservation Association [NHCA]

The mission of the National Hearing Conservation Association is to prevent hearing loss due to noise and other environmental factors in all sectors of society. NHCA provides networking, resources and professional development opportunities to improve skills, practices and services for over 600 members. NHCA’s membership includes audiologists, researchers, students, industrial hygienists, educators, professional service organizations, safety professionals, medical professionals, engineers, audio professionals and others who have dedicated their work to the advancement of hearing loss prevention. For more information about the National Hearing Conservation Association, visit us online at www.hearingconservation.org.

 

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Public Relations contact, Boston: Tiziani Whitmyre Inc., http://www.tizinc.com/public-relations<–>


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