Last Modified: 11/20/2014
VII. Tele-audiology Training
Remote diagnostic audiology with infants requires trained personnel at the patient site and the specialist site. It is recommended that initial training should occur in person, with follow up training sessions occurring remotely, if necessary.
Training Should Encompass:
- Understanding the assistant’s role and the audiologist’s role
- Proper set up and management of equipment
- Strategies to troubleshoot equipment problems
- Preparing the child and family for the assessment
- Assessment procedures
- Infection control
- HIPAA compliance
- Completion of the designated follow up activities, e.g. releases of information, signed consent, and referrals
- Communication with the families prior to, during, and following the audiological session
- Establishing internet connection
Training Assistants at Patient site
Personnel at the patient site are typically trained nurses or medical assistants who are familiar with standard protocols pertaining to patient confidentiality and professional behavior. Tele-audiology programs have developed ways to prompt the assistant to efficiently connect diagnostic equipment to the infant, such as color-coding of wires, creating graphics specific to the equipment for quick reference and clearly labeling disposables for ease of use. Additionally, the personnel at the patient site require specific training for preparing the room, positioning of the caregiver and child for optimal evaluation and remote communications, and management of the equipment. As discussed earlier, the personnel at the patient site also may play a critical role in documentation and verification.
Assistants should successfully demonstrate all responsibilities and technical procedures prior to performing an actual test on at least one infant before participating in a remote assessment.
Training for Audiologists at Specialist’s site
Audiologists also require training in the general procedures discussed earlier in section IV. Specifically, the audiologist must ensure that they too abide by confidentiality and privacy procedures, know how to efficiently provide direction to the assistant, and know how to operate the technology.
Learning community examples:
- Ontario, Canada “Infant Hearing Program (IHP) Remote Audiology Assessment” [PDF] policy manual is used in training of staff.