Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA), and local southern California HLAA Chapters will host the Walk4Hearing in Long Beach on June 3—with a goal to raise $55,000, HLAA National Walk4Hearing Coordinator Rebecca Lander said.
Advanced Bionics CEO and CTO Dr. Gerhard Roehrlein will be acting as Business Team for Long Beach Walk4Hearing this year. "Advanced Bionics is dedicated to improving the lives of those with hearing loss. The HLAA shares this mission, which is why we¹re proud to participate in their Walk4Hearing to help raise awareness and ensure that those impacted by hearing loss get access to vital services," Roehrlein said.
Remember the controversial documentary Sound and Fury? The father of baby Peter, Christopher J. Artinian, recently became HLAA’s spokesperson and National Walk4Hearing Business Chair, according to HLAA’s May 7, 2012 press release.
The goal of the Walk4Hearing, which will be taking place in 21 different locations nationwide this year, is to raise awareness about hearing loss and funds for programs and services for people with hearing loss. The national Walk4Hearing fundraising goal is $1.3 million. 50 percent of the money raised through the Walk4Hearing will stay at the the local level, while other 50 percent will go to the HLAA’s national headquarters in Bethesda, MD, Lander said.
The Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA), founded in 1979, has a mission to open the world of communication to people with hearing loss by providing information, education, support and advocacy, said HLAA’s Executive Director Brenda Battat. One of HLAA’s goals is to improve access to affordable hearing health care. 80 percent of people with hearing loss who could benefit from hearing aids do not get them and one of the main reasons is cost. The number one inquiry into the HLAA office is to how to pay for hearing aids, Battat said. Most people pay out of pocket for hearing aids.
There is some help out there. “There are 16 states that require insurance companies to pay for hearing aids for children,” Battat said. Vocational rehabilitation sometimes covers hearing aids to keep people gainfully employed.
Members of the HLAA include adults with hearing loss and parents with children who have hearing loss. HLAA also works to eradicate the stigma associated with hearing loss and to provide assistance and resources for people with hearing loss and their families to learn how to adjust living with hearing loss, Lander said.
“The walk is important to me personally as an advocate for families with hearing loss and professionally as the CEO at Advanced Bionics, so it¹s an honor to be the Business Team Chair. At AB, we are privileged to see how our technology changes lives by helping people hear. I hope you¹ll join us on the walk and help make a difference,” Roehrlein said.
For more information about Walk4Hearing, visit www.walk4hearing.org.