Successful ‘Demystifying Cochlear Implants’ Seminar In Charlottetown

November 5, 2017.  On October 14, 2017 CHHA PEI hosted a seminar presented by Dr. David Morris of Halifax, entitled ‘Demystifying Cochlear Implants’.  Dr. Morris gave an engaging and informative session, taking us through the basic principles of cochlear implants, how this technology began and evolved, and how a modern cochlear implant looks like today.

CIMG9432 Oct 14 2017 CI Seminar Ctown during seminar

Dr. David Morris at the lecturn. (Photo credit: Daria Valkenburg)

He also discussed the criteria for being a candidate for cochlear implant surgery, and how a person is evaluated. Some of the criteria include:

For adults (18 years and older):

  • Must have severe to profound hearing loss in both ears
  • Do not benefit from hearing aids.
  • Are post-lingually deafened (in other words, you once had hearing and heard speech)
  • What is the cause of the hearing loss
  • What is the commitment to follow-up care

For children (12 months and older):

  • Must have a profound hearing loss in both ears
  • Do not benefit from hearing aids
  • What is the cause of the hearing loss
  • What is the child’s educational placement
  • What is the family’s commitment to follow-up care

We then were taken on a brief ‘tour’ of the surgical process.  You sure need a steady hand to do this type of surgery!

The afternoon session included a panel discussion in which Dr. Morris asked two participants specific questions on their surgical experience and life before and after the surgery. This was fascinating for all participants.

The seminar ended with a final question and answer session.  Many of the questions had been submitted ahead of time and were answered during the day, making for a very informative event tailored to the audience.

Participants included those with cochlear implants, those on the road to a cochlear implant or on the waiting list for one, and supportive family members.

Besides Dr. Morris, we were joined by two sponsors, both firms who supply cochlear implants:  MED-EL and Cochlear Canada Inc., who were kept busy answering questions and providing information. Three other sponsors, Prince Edward Island Seniors Secretariat, Better Hearing Solutions, and ALDS, helped make this session affordable.  Tim Hortons provided us with coffee.

We thank all of our sponsors for their support.  Without it, we would not be able to have provided real time captioning.  It was the cost of real time captioning that made this an expensive seminar, but a cost that made it possible for everyone to participate, no matter what their level of hearing ability.

CIMG9440 Oct 14 2017 CI Seminar Ctown Arturo of Cochlear Canada

Arturo Madrid-Zazueta, Area Manager of Cochlear Canada Inc. (Photo credit: Daria Valkenburg)

CIMG9438 Oct 14 2017 CI Seminar Ctown Jodi and Evelyn of MEDEL

Dr. Jodi Ostroff, Clinical Account Manager for Canada of MED-EL on left, and Beverley Elwell of the patient support team, on right. (Photo credit: Daria Valkenburg)

Please visit our sponsors’ visit to learn more about the awesome work they do in providing products, research, and information of interest to those who have hearing loss.

Cochlear Canada Inc:

MED-EL: and you can visit their blog at

Better Hearing Solutions: and you can also visit their Facebook page at


PEI Seniors Secretariat:

The evaluations from this session were extremely positive, and provided great information for us as a Chapter and for Dr. Morris in his practice.  A sample of the many comments and suggestions is listed here:

  • Can we find an audiologist on PEI who has an interest in cochlear implants?
  • I really appreciate the work of the organizers and Dr. Morris for coming to speak to us.
  • Very well organized and an informative day. Thank you.
  • The presenter was excellent. It gives me a better understanding about cochlear implants.
  • So grateful for all the information. Enjoyed the presentation very much.
  • Happy to see the captioning.
CIMG9444 Oct 14 2017 CI Seminar Ctown Dr Morris Louisa Sabine Alma Roger Curtiss

Back row, left to right: Curtiss Allum, Dr. David Morris, Roger Baillie. Front row: CHHA PEI member Alma Nunn with Dr Moriss’s daughters Louisa and Sabine. (Photo credit: Daria Valkenburg)

If you have a cochlear implant, or are on the journey to one, or are a supportive family member, please share your experiences and stories, the questions and fears you may have had.  We welcome your input!  (See Calling Cochlear Implant Users)

Do you have a tip or story to share about hearing loss, or living with someone who is hard of hearing?  Let us know!  Comments can be made on this blog, or you can email us at

© Daria Valkenburg


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