Dubai Healthcare City (DHCC) and leading implantable hearing device company Cochlear opened a new center this week to cater to hearing-impaired patients in the region, including the rising number of children with congenital hearing loss.
Up to 90% of children in the Middle East who receive hearing treatments are between the ages of 3 and 17, according to a survey made by Cochlear during the first quarter of 2014.
Cochlear's survery covered patients from the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Oman, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Sudan and Syria.
In light of this trend, the company collaborated with Dubai Healthcare City to offer leading, state-of-the-art hearing treatment for children and their families living in the United Arab Emirates and the rest of the Middle East.
“Cochlear’s regional office will address the incidence of hearing loss in the UAE and region, and provide integral training support. Its operations reflect DHCC’s focus on healthcare delivery in tandem with medical education,”
Marwan Abedin, Chief Executive Officer of Dubai Healthcare City, said in a press release.
The center will offer early diagnosis and treatment against the rising number of hearing conditions among children in the Middle East.
Studies have shown that extensive and permanent hearing loss can be prevented by early intervention and Cochlear hopes to contribute to the effort.
The worldwide prevalence of hearing loss is estimated to be about 1-3 in 1,000 persons but the actual rate in the GCC population is perceived to be higher by some experts.
About half of the cases of congenital hearing loss are linked to genetic and cultural reasons, and the high incidence of hearing impairment in the region may be partially linked to a high level of consanguinity in the population and the practice to marry within families.
Cochlear Middle East will also provide training and support to healthcare professionals, similar to expertise provided by its Cochlear Academy in Mechelen, Belgium.
The region’s physicians, surgeons, audiologists, speech therapists, nurses and teachers of the deaf can benefit from the company’s expertise on cochlear implants, bone conduction implants and bone anchored prosthetics.
“Established in 1981 in Australia, Cochlear has pioneered the global development of implantable hearing solutions. Cochlear has retained its global leadership via a relentless commitment to technology innovation, device reliability, best hearing performance and excellent customer support,”
Richard Brook, President, Cochlear, EMEA & Latin America, said in a statement.
“The opening of Cochlear in Dubai Healthcare City will boost treatment options among hearing impaired patients whether children, adults or senior citizens. The office will also introduce Cochlear’s latest range of products,”
This looks to be a worthy addition to Dubai Healthcare City, already a leading medical tourism hub for its combination of medical treatment, education and research.
The opening of new facilities continue as Dubai commits to its grand plan to become a premier destination for healthcare.
Cochlear implants are commonly indicated for those with severe or profound deafness.
It works by receiving sound waves, converting them to electrical signals and transmitting them through the auditory nerve to the brain so that the signal can be processed as sound.
The electrodes in cochlear implants stimulate the auditory nerve to process sound, and a new study suggests that they can actually regenerate dead neurons to enhance the overall quality of sound.