July 19, 2013
According to Department of Defense statistics, hearing loss is the number one war-related injury affecting veterans from the battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan. An estimated 60 percent of veterans returning from Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) and Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) have some hearing damage, with 840,000 suffering from tinnitus and just over 700,000 suffering from hearing loss. More than 1.2 million veterans from every generation suffer from some form of hearing loss.
"Our goal is to start a national dialog about veterans with hearing loss," said Michele Boyd, Heroes With Hearing Loss program manager. "We want to get people talking and raise awareness about what makes hearing loss among veterans a different kind of challenge."
The Heroes With Hearing Loss program, which made its debut at the 114th Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. (VFW) National Convention this weekend in Louisville, KY, brings veterans together to learn more about hearing loss, share their experiences and explore resources that can assist them.
VFW members attended three special panel discussions at the conference: "Heroes With Hearing Loss — A Holistic Approach to Hearing Healthcare for Veterans" and "My Hero with Hearing Loss - The Perspective of Family and Friends of Veterans." Each panel is assembled from a diverse group of veterans, family members and healthcare professionals who share their experiences in an open forum.
"Hamilton greatly appreciates the sacrifices of our nation's service men and women," said vice president of Hamilton CapTel, Dixie Ziegler. "We are grateful for the opportunity to contribute our expertise in captioned telephone services to veterans who experience hearing loss."
As the sponsor of the Heroes With Hearing Loss program, Hamilton CapTel is offering captioned telephones at a discount to all eligible veterans who experience hearing loss. These phones are available for demonstration at the Heroes With Hearing Loss exhibit, located at booth #39, during the VFW National Convention.