Best Practices in Audiology

There are many sources of information on best practices which should be followed in providing audiology services. I recommend that you review relevant position statements or clinical guidelines available on the web site for the American Academy of Audiology or AAA (

I often by invitation give a lecture (ranging in length from 1 to 3 hours) entitled "Best Practices in Audiology Today". Here's an abstract and learning objectives for one of the presentations.

Abstract: Since the beginning of audiology as a profession about 60 years ago, clinical practice has been influenced by the introduction of numerous test procedures and technological advances. We now have access to behavioral and electrophysiologic measures of auditory function and processing from the cochlea to the cortex that permit sensitive and specific diagnostic audiologic assessment across the age span ... from newborn infants to elderly adults.

The session begins with a review of the diverse array of audiologic test procedures available to clinical audiologists. Then, suggestions are offered for the reorganization of specific procedures into new diagnostic test batteries for the efficient and effective assessment of selected patient populations, including infants at risk for hearing loss, children at risk for auditory processing disorders, adults at risk for noise induced auditory dysfunction, adults presenting with the chief complaint of tinnitus, and patients with suspected pseudohypacusis.

The recommendation for inclusion of a collection of audiologic procedures within a test battery are guided not by their historical significance or by personal preference but, rather, by the following four parameters: 1) research evidence in support of the procedure, 2) clinical efficiency of the procedure (e.g., test time and cost), 3) the value added by the procedure to the diagnosis of auditory dysfunction, and 4) contribution of the procedure to audiologic management and patient outcome. Audiologists attending this session will be prepared to critically evaluate their clinical practices with regard to these parameters, and with the ultimate objective of minimizing health care cost while improving patient outcome.

Learner Outcomes: At the end of the presentation, attendees will be able to

If you're interested, I've posted a PPT presentation on the topic.

James W. Hall III       |