All Ears is 1st Hearing Clinic to Provide Patients with Mobile Loop Support
All Ears Hearing Services, the only hearing clinic on Florida’s West Coast to provide
mobile service, has added a hearing loop system to support their patients and
educational programs. This is the first commercial application of a mobile loop in Florida
and is also believed to be the first use of a loop to support a mobile hearing services
provider in the country.
The hearing loop is the only system that sends sound from a microphone, television or
another sound source directly into a hearing aid. The loop, which has suddenly burst
onto the local scene at so many major community venues in the area in the last six
months, delivers the cleanest, clearest, interference-free sound for hearing aid wearers.
Mark Selis, a Certified Hearing Aid Specialist, who founded All Ears, noted, “ The loop
allows our audiologist to provide post-dispensing service with greater hearing support
for our patients. It will also help us to educate patients on this new development so they
can get out into the community more often. Many of these people had given up on
theatre and religious services long ago, but with a loop they can enjoy these events
Jim Scott of Complete Hearing Solutions which installed the loop, said, “We have
recently installed a lot of mobile loops in people’s cars, but All Ears is the first to
acknowledge the enormous potential for mobile services. We believe taxis, buses
and trains will soon recognize the value it offers to such a large part of our population.”
Over 110,000 people in Sarasota and Manatee County have hearing loss. They
represent 16.1% of the population, the highest incidence in the US.
Sixteen major theatres in Sarasota and Manatee County including Van Wezel, Venice
Theatre and Manatee Players have added the loop in the last six months. In addition,
28 other locations including houses of worship, libraries and community centers have
also added the system in recent months. The loop system has been deployed
throughout major cities in Europe for years with most theatres, churches, retailers,
banks and many other venues offering the system. Loops have been cropping up at
these same venues across the US with increasing frequency in the past year. However
mobile loops, while quite popular in Europe, are still quite new in the US where the New
York City Subway system and Manhattan taxicabs are the only noteworthy commercial
mobile applications to date. For a full list of local looped venues, go to the Hearing Loss
Association of Sarasota’s website: www.hlas.org.