The Academy Joins FCHHC and Congressional Staff for an Educational Briefing and Tour of the NIDCD/NIH Clinical Center
On August 24, the American Academy of Audiology participated in a luncheon briefing and tour of the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communications Disorders (NIDCD) labs at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Clinical Center in Bethesda, MD. The event was sponsored by members of the Friends of the Congressional Hearing Health Caucus (FCHHC), a collection of associations and organizations focused on raising awareness for hearing health care on Capitol Hill. The FCHHC hosts events in support of the Congressional Hearing Health Caucus (CHHC). The Academy has been active within the FCHHC for several years.
The NIDCD conducts and supports research regarding hearing, balance, smell, taste, voice, speech, and language. The FCHHC event was designed to educate congressional staff and other attendees about the NIDCD's goals, functions, and current research projects. The luncheon briefing featured presentations from Elka Scordalakes, PhD, a legislative analyst for NIDCD, and Andrew Griffith, MD, PhD, NIDCD's scientific director. Dr. Scordalakes gave an overview of the NIH and NIDCD, followed by Dr. Griffith speaking about NIDCD's intramural research program, which includes work on key issues of importance for the Academy and the profession, such as Early Hearing Detection and Intervention (EHDI) programs.
Following the briefing, attendees toured two NIDCD labs and heard from the scientists spearheading the research projects in those labs. In one, Michael Hoa, MD, discussed his research on auditory restoration; in the other, Catherine Weisz, PhD, presented her research on the electrical properties of auditory neurons. Attendees were able to interact with state-of-the-art research equipment and ask questions about these innovative research projects at the forefront of hearing health research.
The Academy continues to work with the FCHHC on planning future educational events for members of Congress, their staff, and other key policymakers and stakeholders.