The House Ear Institute's Sound Partner(TM) hearing conservation program recently announced results of hearing screenings conducted on November 19-20 at LDI99 in Orlando. According to the institute, 94 attendees had their hearing checked at LDI99. Results revealed that 18% of those tested showed some degree of hearing loss in the higher frequencies (3K, 4K, 6K). Of the 94 people screened, eight were found to have hearing loss in the mild range; seven had hearing loss in the moderate range; and two had severe hearing loss. Prevalence of hearing loss in the general population is 13.8% among 45- to 64-year-olds (according to the National Health Interview Survey of 1994).

Dilys Jones, head of the House Ear Institute, notes that entertainment industry professionals are at high risk for hearing loss from noise exposure on the job. "What can industry pros do to prevent further hearing loss?" she asks. "The answer is become more aware of high sound pressure levels in the environment and use hearing protection."

The hearing screenings provided at the LDI99 were in response to growing interest in hearing conservation. House Ear Institute and LDI teamed up to offer free hearing screenings to all convention-goers. A mobile audiological screening unit provided by the House Ear Institute was outside the exhibit hall, and attendees were invited to stop by for their free hearing screening during show hours. Intertec Publishing and Neutrik USA were co-sponsors of the hearing screenings.

The House Ear Institute's Sound Partner program is available to individuals, companies, and associations in the electronics industry. The hearing conservation and education program's primary goal is to raise awareness of the permanent hearing damage caused by exposure to excessive sound levels. Proceeds from the Sound Partner sponsorships help underwrite the costs of developing and distributing hearing education and conservation training materials to schools and audio engineering programs.

Founded in 1946 by Dr. Howard House, the House Ear Institute is a non-profit hearing research and education center located in Los Angeles. The Institute is dedicated to gaining a better understanding of the causes, cures and prevention of ear disease and hearing disorders and applying that knowledge to improve the quality of life of those with any degree of hearing loss.

A brochure and price list for the sponsorship programs and a backgrounder kit with details on both House Ear Institute and the conservation program are available by contacting Dilys Jones at (213) 483-4431, or via email: djones@hei.org