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Laura Friedman
Apr 10, 2016

Attention deficit, developmental delays, processing disorder: These were the words my parents heard about me from a half dozen doctors, audiologists and speech-language pathologists. But both my parents (and grandmother) work in the medical field, and these diagnoses just didn’t fit what they saw. When my attention was grabbed, I had no issues sitting still or focusing. Simply put, I was not speaking or responding to sounds.

After 18 months of being tested and retested with one misdiagnosis after the next, someone advised my mother to take me to the school district for testing. This was after a year’s worth of constant speech and language therapy. Fearing I would be labeled, my mother initially objected, but eventually she relented, and within minutes of my being tested, the school district informed her I had hearing loss. I was 3 at the time, and this was only the beginning of a long road ahead.

The diagnosis finally made sense. The doctors started talking about hearing aids, schools for the deaf and sign language, and they told my parents I would never be able to function in the hearing world. My parents were devastated; their world was flipped upside down.

Read More  . . . Laura Friedman



Better Hearing Consumer

Note: If  you’re looking for tips on how to get oil stains out of your shirt, or how to remove old wallpaper, you’re in the wrong place. People with hearing loss deal with those issues in the same way as hearing people. This article is about dealing with noise, Enemy #1 of people with hearing loss.

Housework is noisy. Yesterday, as I moved through the house dragging the central vac hose behind me, I could focus only on the boredom—and the noise. My cats feel the same way, flying into a hiding place at the sight of the vacuum.

Noise is often defined as unwanted sound, so I guess that means that nobody likes noise. But what hearing people consider to be wanted sound is often just sheer noise for people with hearing loss (PWHL), especially those of us who  . . .

Read More  . . . Gael Hannan



News - Medical
March 29, 2016

Improving the health of the deaf and hard-of-hearing population through accessible patient-reported outcome measures is the goal of a $1.6 million National Institutes of Health-funded study, led by Rochester Institute of Technology.

Researchers and providers will, for the first time, have a tool for assessing their deaf and hard-of-hearing patients' health-related quality-of-life outcomes in American Sign Language. Resulting data will lend new insights in patient outcomes research and improve prevention and treatment models for the underserved deaf and hard-of-hearing population, said Poorna Kushalnagar, a health psychologist and research associate professor in RIT's Chester F. Carlson Center for Imaging Science.

Patient assessments evaluate symptoms, well-being and life satisfaction, as well as physical, mental and social health. Surveys designed for English speakers present a language barrier for many users of American Sign Language and accessible services, Kushalnagar said.

Read more . . . NIH-funded



Aug 7, 2015 01:00 PM
By  Susan Scutti

About one-third of American adults between the ages of 65 and 75 have some degree of hearing loss, while for those who are even older, that number rises to nearly one in two, the Mayo Clinic notes. A new study suggests hearing loss — or hearing less — is under-treated despite evidence that the latest generation of hearing aids may help to lessen depression and anxiety while also improving mental functioning.

“Anger, frustration, depression and anxiety are all common among people who find themselves hard of hearing,” Dr. David Myers, a psychology professor at Hope College in Michigan, stated in a press release. “Getting people to use the latest in hearing aid technology can help them regain control of their life and achieve emotional stability and even better cognitive functioning.”

Heredity and chronic exposure to loud noises are the main factors that contribute to hearing loss, scientists say. While people commonly fear excessive earwax might contribute to their hearing loss, it usually does so only temporarily. A 2011 study investigated hearing loss and its relationship to dementia and found the risk of all-cause dementia increased with hearing loss severity. Since social isolation has been linked to dementia (and other cognitive disorders), this result makes intuitive sense.

Read More  . . .  New Generation Hearing Aids



  • Duke of Edinburgh starts using phone designed for hard of hearing
  • The amplicomms M8000 mobile is up to 80 times louder than normal 
  • The handset also features a larger keypad and an SOS emergency button
  • The company, Hearing Direct, received a thank-you call from the Palace 

January 16 2015 | UPDATED: January  19 2015

He only bedgrudgingly started to wear a hearing aid in public a few months ago.But Prince Philip is already making adjustments for it in other areas of his life.The 93-year-old royal has just started using a special mobile phone especially designed for people suffering from hearing loss, it can be revealed.

Most high street phones are not compatible for people wearing aids because of the levels of interfearence. And while Philip’s new amplicomms M8000 is short on smart phone-style gimmicks, it can be up to 80 times louder than regular mobiles.

It also has a powerful vibrating alert - and a ringtone that can sound as loud as a road drill.

Read more: 





The Justice Department announced today a settlement with Franciscan St. James Health (St. James), to ensure that patients and companions who are deaf or hard of hearing receive sign language interpreters and other services necessary to ensure effective communication, in compliance with Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Under the agreement, St. James will pay $70,000 in damages to a patient who is deaf who was denied a sign language interpreter throughout her four day stay in the hospital. The settlement also requires that St. James provide auxiliary aids and services, including sign language interpreters, to people who are deaf or hard of hearing within prescribed time frames and free of charge; designate an ADA Administrator; utilize their grievance resolution systems to investigate disputes regarding effective communication with deaf and hard of hearing patients; post notices of their effective communication policy; and train hospital personnel on the effective communication reqwuirements of the ADA. The settlement is part of the Department's Barrier-Free Health Care Initiative, a partnership of the Civil Rights Division and U. S. Attorney's offices across the nation to ensure that people with disabilities, including those who are deaf or hard of hearing, who have HIV, or who have mobility disabilities, have equal access to medical services.

To find out more about this settlement agreement or about the ADA, please visit our ADA website at  For more information on the Barrier-Free Health Care Initiative visit Those interested in finding out more about the ADA may also call the Justice Department's toll-free ADA Information Line at 800-514-0301 or 800-514-0383 (TDD).

Read full Press release




September 12, 2014

Dear Prospective Exhibitors,

The Mid-Atlantic Deaf & HH Festival is fast approaching and I wanted to send out a friendly reminder to make sure and reserve your booth early so you receive the “Early Bird Special Price”.  The Early Bird Special has been extended and the new deadline is September 30, 2014.

This is a great way to showcase your business or organization and make new business contacts, launch your new products and sell your products and services.

Space is limited and exhibit contracts are on a first-come, first-serve basis.   Don’t miss out!

If you have any questions please feel free to contact me at:


VP: 623-208-7648


Wayne Berke, Chair

Download Event flyer

Doenload 1-dayMaryland DeafFestival 2014ExhibitionContract




Volunteers who are deaf or hard of hearing and/or fluent in American Sign Language are needed in Reston, Herndon and Vienna for assistance with computers, grocery shopping, and social visiting.

For these and other volunteer opportunities, call 703-324-5406, TTY 711 or visit and click on Volunteer Solutions.



Click HERE to RSVP 

Expect.Employ. Empower

Workshops for Job Seekers

Download Flyer PDF

Deaf, hard of hearing, and deafblind jobseekers are welcome to attend either workshop. Professionals that work with Deaf, hard of hearing, and deafblind individuals are also welcome. Both workshops are open to all who are interested! Interpreters and CART will be provided at both workshops.

Friday, October 17, 2014
Lower Shore Job One-Stop Job Market
Suite 111
31901 Tri-County Way
Salisbury, MD 21804


Hard of Hearing:
Monday, October 27, 2014
Prince George's County Economic Development Corporation Conference Room
Room 140
1801 McCormick Drive
Largo, MD 20774

In honor of National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM) in October, ODHH and the Department of Labor, Licensing, and Regulation (DLLR) will host two workshops for jobseekers who are deaf, hard of hearing, or deafblind. NDEAM is a national campaign that raises awareness about disability employment issues and celebrates the many and varied contributions of America's workers with disabilities. The theme for 2014 is "Expect. Employ. Empower." Both workshops will include information on basic job seeking skills. During the first half of the event, we will have a panel of experts and during the second half of the event, there will be interactive workstations where job-seekers can have professionals work on their resumes, conduct mock interviews, see a display of different accomodations that apply to the workspace, and more.


The Governor's Office of the Deaf
and Hard of Hearing
217 E. Redwood Street Suite: 910
Baltimore, MD 21202
443-453-5954 VP


Advocacy Alert -

Come to the Rally To Celebrate Legislation Supporting a Department of Defense Demonstration Program For the Accession to Active Duty of Deaf and Hard of Hearing Individuals

September 12, 2014 Friday
9:00 AM - 3:00 PM
Assembling at Lafayette Park at the northern lawn of the White House

Directions and Route of Rally

Rally Information




People otherwise fit for duty would be given chance

AirForce Times
Aug. 2, 2014
By Kristin Davis  - Staff writer
Article Source

A lawmaker who advocates for the deaf is calling for a trial program that would allow a small number of hearing impaired to serve in the Air Force.

Rep. Mark Takano, D-Calif., introduced in the House on Wednesday legislation that would give 15 to 20 people who are deaf or hard of hearing but otherwise fit for military duty the chance to serve their country.

The Defense Department excludes from service those who are deaf, use a hearing aid or have a cochlear implant. Navy Lt. Cmdr. Nate Christensen, a DoD spokesman, said that is for good reason.

“In all areas of military life, but especially in combat, an individual's life and the lives of his or her comrades may depend on what individuals can hear. Situations could occur where hearing impairment would not only result in injury or loss of life, but could jeopardize a unit's mission,” he said in an email. “Individuals who are physically disqualified for military duty can and do become civilian members of the team. The work they perform for the Department and our country is valuable and rewarding but without the rigors of military duty.”

The proposed legislation is a companion to a bill introduced in the Senate in December by Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, who has noted the military allows service members who acquire a disability while serving their country to remain on active duty.

Read more  . . .


August 12-24, Jefferson Lab (628 Hofstadter Road, Newport News, Va.) will be hosting a free summer science camp for rising 4-8th graders who are deaf or hard of hearing. Students will enjoy lots of experiments and hands-on activities, all in ASL (interpreters provided)! Registration is required. For more information, or to register, please email Brita R. Hampton at Be sure to include the student's name, grade level and school.

From  Arva Priola



Opening Doors-Unlocking Potential 2014!   
Building Skills for Success with Students Who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing  ODUP 2014

Tuesday & Wednesday, July 29-30, 2014 at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel, Charlottesville, VA.
Registration fee:

  • $65 for VA professionals;
  • $55 for paraprofessionals/ students;
  • $220 for private providers and out-of-state participants.

This year's two-day ODUP Institute focuses learning on the tools found in Building Skills for Success in the Fast-Paced Classroom (Anderson & Arnoldi) and Steps to Success (Price), which participants will receive as part of their registration fee.

Presenters, Karen Anderson and Lynne Price will guide VA teachers of the deaf/hard of hearing (TODHH) and all who work directly with students who are deaf or hard of hearing in Virginia schools through these two comprehensive resources designed to effectively address the needs of students who are d/hh across all grade levels in order to improve student outcomes.

These two resources along with concurrent presentations, exhibits and the opportunity to network with colleagues from across VA will make ODUP 2014 an event sure to build new energy and enthusiasm for the 2014-15 school year.

In addition to a Professional Development Certificate for attendance at this year’s institute, participants may again obtain graduate credit through Radford University. (Please see the back page of the brochure and visit for details.)
BUT WAIT. . .there's more! 

 #1: An additional 2 hours credit may be awarded for participation in a Pre-ODUP distance session, Speech Perception 101, recommended for the “Communication Repair” session at ODUP 2014! The link and directions for this session will be available beginning June 1.   See

#2: TODHH who are currently full-time employees directly employed by a Virginia public school division or state-operated school may be eligible for reimbursement of state-rate lodging at the DoubleTree hotel for Tuesday, July 29. Please see the registration brochure for details. (Note: TODHH will receive additional information directly regarding this opportunity.)

Online registration will open by the week of May 12.  Be on the lookout for an announcement from us letting you know we can begin accepting online registrations. Please do not attempt to register online until you receive this “Registration now OPEN” announcement. For additional information, please visit the ODUP 2014! Shutterfly site at:

For further information on ODUP 2014! contact: Ann Hughes at

Enjoy the rest of this 2013-14 school year!  See you in Charlottesville in July!



Deaf and Hard of Hearing Awareness Day at Kings Dominion!Kings_Dominion_Youth

VAD members and friends

Greetings from Kings Dominion!  On May 31, 2014 Kings Dominion is hosting our annual Deaf and Hard of Hearing Awareness Day.  Spectacular entertainment, educational exhibits and interpreters for many shows and services will make this a memorable day for all.  There is a special price available for your members,  students and guests to take advantage of.  Tickets can be purchased by calling 804-876-5000.



ALDA's 2014 Convention

Norfolk, VA October 8 - 12 , 2014
Early Bird Registration Ends May 31, 2014
For More Information . . .

2014 RID Region V Conference

San Diego, CA  June 25-28, 2014
More Information . . .

The Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA) Convention

Austin, Texas June 26 – 29
More information  . . .

2014 AG Bell Convention - Make Your Hotel Reservation Today

Walt Disney World , Orlando, Florida
More Information  . . .

2014 RID Region II Conference

Atlanta, GA   July 1-5, 2014
More Information . . .

52nd Biennial National Association of the Deaf Conference (NAD)

Atlanta, Georgia , July 1-5, 2014
More Information . . .

Gallaudet 150 Alumni Reunion

Gallaudet University, Washington, DC July 9-13, 2014
More information . . .

Say What Club

Madison, Wisconsin  July 16-19, 2014
More Information  . . .

2014 RID Region IV Conference

Des Moines, IA   July 16-20, 2014
More Information . . .

2014 RID Region III Conference

Lansing, MI   July 24-27, 2014
For More Information  . . .

2014 RID Region I Conference

Wakefield, MA  July 31- August 3, 2014
For More Information  . . .

Check out Community Calendar calendar