Over the last few months, the COVID-19 pandemic has presented huge challenges for all of us across Texas. These have been particularly felt among the people of Abilene and its surrounding communities, who we’ve served since 2004.
But amidst this upheaval, we have adapted to the crisis. And throughout this, our patients’ welfare has remained at the forefront of our decision-making process.
Making the right calls
Like many businesses, we were forced to alter our services when Governor Abbot issued his executive order in March. But this got us thinking – how can we still meet our patients’ needs when gatherings between people are prohibited?
That’s when we developed our curbside pick-up initiative. With a scheduled appointment, patients could be served by our specialist without leaving their vehicle. This minimized contact between individuals and ensured those with a hearing aid concern could be advised rapidly.
Also, we created a free delivery service so anyone in need could have hearing aid supplies transported straight to their door. But soon, we also wanted to ensure that patients could contact their doctor of audiology for one-to-one assistance
That’s when we developed our ground-breaking Telehealth platform, Tele Audiology. Instead of requiring patients to drive to our location, we would contact them directly and advise them from their homes.
Using the latest communication technology, our doctors of audiology could offer advice and guidance on a range of issues faced by those in our community. We paired this service with “remote assist” hearing aid software, which allowed us to adjust patients’ hearing devices via their internet connection.
As we developed this service, we realized it wasn’t just a solution for COVID-19, but ideally suited to busy parents and working professionals who struggled to make appointments. This means we’ve decided to continue Tele Audiology for years to come.
Into the future
As the state begins to adjust to new normal conditions, we’ve created a brand-new set of protocols designed to protect every patient who comes through our doors. Staff will be equipped with full personal protection equipment and undergo rigorous cleanliness rituals to reduce any form of transmission.
Extra time will also be set aside between appointments, so examination rooms and hallways can be thoroughly cleaned. We’ll also ask patients to wash their hands and check their fitness before we treat them.
It’s just another way we’re putting our community’s health at the center of how we adapt to the pandemic’s challenges.
These are just some of the stats we’ve clocked up since the start of the outbreak:
- 309 curbside appointments
- 751 calls to check on patients
- 58 patients provided with free deliveries
- 14 hearing aids remotely programmed
- 188 cups of coffee drunk
- 5 kids home-schooled
- 1 new office doorbell purchased
Are you concerned about hearing loss? Contact us now, and we can help you make the right decisions about your hearing today!