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Wising Up About NIHL. Public Education Efforts To Prevent NIHL in Children National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders. October 20, 2006 National Institutes of Health U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Objectives. Learn about

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wising up about nihl

Wising Up About NIHL

Public Education Efforts To Prevent NIHL in Children

National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders

October 20, 2006

National Institutes of Health

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

  • Learn about
    • NIDCD’s support of hearing research.
    • NIDCD’s public education efforts in NIHL.
    • Evaluation of WISE EARS! national campaign.
    • Findings and recommendations for future direction.
    • Next steps: Campaign and partnership development.
fy 2005 budget by program area in thousands
FY 2005 Budget, by Program Area ($ in thousands)






















nihl in children
NIHL in Children

“Young people live in a loud and noisy world. In this age of the escalating use of personal stereo systems, hands-free cell phones, and portable movie/game systems, youth worldwide are exposed to harmful levels of noise every day.”

James F. Battey, Jr., M.D., Ph.D.

Director, NIDCD

February 2006

communicating research results to the public
Communicating Research Results to the Public
  • Health information based on scientific discovery.
  • Fact sheets, newsletter, conference exhibits, press releases.
  • Online health information and resources.
  • Toll-free information service.
  • Participation in HHS federal project: Healthy People 2010.
elementary school children grades 3 6
Elementary School Children: Grades 3–6
  • “I Love What I Hear”
    • Introduce concept of hearing


    • Describe hearing and sound.
  • Resources:
    • Videotape/DVD.
    • Teacher curriculum guide.
    • Web-based interactive sound ruler.
    • “How Loud is Too Loud” bookmark.
middle school children grades 7 8
Middle School Children: Grades 7–8
  • “How Your Brain Understands

What Your Ear Hears”

    • Develop healthy hearing habits.
    • Avoid excessive exposure to loud noises.
  • Resources:
    • Interactive, Web-based teaching units about science/human health through which students:
      • Learn about, explore, and investigate sound, communication, and the brain.
      • Apply concepts to solve problems and reduce the risk of hearing loss.
    • Free to science teachers and school administrators.
wise ears all ages
  • 1999: WISE EARS!—NIDCD partners with NIOSH to promote a national campaign to prevent NIHL in children and workers.
    • Raise awareness about NIHL among all audiences.
    • Motivate all audiences to take action.


    • Promotional materials: Bookmarks, door hangers, magnets, stickers.
    • Coalition newsletter.
    • Web-based materials.
    • Fact sheets for different audiences.
    • Media outreach.
  • 2004: WISE EARS! coalition grows to a network of nearly 90 organizations to promote awareness in media, communities.
measuring wise ears
Measuring WISE EARS!
  • 2006: Evaluation of the campaign
    • Part I. Identify NIHL information available to the public through:
      • Literature searches.
      • Media coverage.
      • WISE EARS! and other national public education campaigns about NIHL.
    • Part II. Interview WISE EARS! coalition members about:
      • Outreach to target audiences.
      • Appeal/effectiveness of WISE EARS! materials.
      • Future direction of the campaign.
findings from the environmental scan
Findings From the Environmental Scan
  • Public awareness of NIHL is growing.
    • Mainstream media coverage is high.
    • Broad-based organizations (e.g., MTV) contribute resources to raising public awareness about NIHL.
    • NIHL prevention campaigns target youth.
findings from the environmental scan11
Findings From theEnvironmental Scan
  • Gaps exist in youth knowledge of NIHL and between awareness and positive action.
    • Knowledge: 16 percent of adolescents and young adults reported in an MTV survey that they had heard, read, or seen anything related to the issue of hearing loss.
    • Behavior: 72 percent of college students, who demonstrated a high degree of knowledge about NIHL prevention, reported that they never wore hearing protection.
lessons learned from the environmental scan

Recommendations From the Environmental Scan

Lessons Learned Fromthe Environmental Scan
  • Programmatic
    • Give a NIHL campaign a higher priority within NIDCD.
    • Conduct a comprehensive campaign evaluation.
  • Strategic
    • Focus on a specific target audience.
    • Select partners and delivery channels with the highest potential to attract and engage the target audience.
    • Reach additional target audiences by supporting programs conducted by other organizations.
  • Tactical
    • Conduct a more aggressive and responsive media outreach.
    • Make greater use of technology to expand campaign outreach.
key findings from the coalition interviews

Findings From the

Coalition Interviews

Key Findings Fromthe Coalition Interviews
  • Coalition involvement
    • Coalition members reflect the goal of WISE EARS!
    • Majority of coalition members do not promote the campaign aggressively.
    • Many respondents value, use, and refer others to the WISE EARS! Web site and materials.
    • Respondents indicate a willingness to partner with NIDCD to promote future health messages.

Recommendations From

the Coalition Interviews

  • Future direction
    • Develop NIHL-prevention materials for a more targeted audience.
    • Focus the campaign on youth.
    • Conduct a more aggressive campaign, with more emphasis on distributing materials through the Web, mass media, and partnering organizations.
recommended target audience tweens
Recommended Target Audience: Tweens
  • Focus on children ages nine to 14 supported by:
    • Studies suggesting exposure to hazardous levels of noise.
    • Opportunity to influence attitudes and behaviors before or as tweens develop listening, leisure, and working habits.
    • Opportunity to complement existing education programs aimed at youth.

Next Steps: Retarget, Rename,and Redesign

  • Developing a new NIHL prevention campaign will involve:
    • Tailoring materials to appeal to the specific target audience.
    • Pretesting concepts, messages, and materials with the intended audience.
    • Developing collaborative partnerships.

Next Steps: Rebuild and

Reinvigorate Partnerships

  • Partner opportunities and responsibilities:
    • Extend outreach and campaign communication channels.
    • Raise national awareness of their own organization.
    • Receive campaign materials to use in support of their own outreach efforts.
    • Receive recognition in media materials.
    • Annual evaluation of their involvement and commitment.
contact information
Contact Information

Patricia Blessing

Chief, Office of Health Communication

and Public Liaison

National Institute on Deafness and

Other Communication Disorders




environmental scan bibliography
Environmental Scan Bibliography

Biassoni, E.C., Serra, M.R., Richter, U., Joekes, S., Yacci, M.R., Carignani, J.A., Abraham, S., Minoldo, G., and Franco, G. (2005). Recreational noise exposure and its effects on the hearing of adolescents. Part II: Development of hearing disorders. International Journal of Audiology, 44, 74–86.Bogoch, I.I., House, R.A., and Kudla, I. (2005). Perceptions about hearing protection and noise-induced hearing loss of attendees of rock concerts. Canadian Journal of Public Health, 96, 69–72.Borchgrevink, H.M. (2003). Does health promotion work in relation to noise? Noise & Health, 5 25–30.

Chung, J.H., Des Roches, C.M., Meunier, J., and Eavey, R.D. (2005). Evaluation of noise-induced hearing loss in young people using a Web-based survey technique. Pediatrics, 115, 861–867.Crandell, C., Mills, T.L., and Gauthier, R. (2004). Knowledge, behaviors, and attitudes about hearing loss and hearing protection among racial/ethnically diverse young adults. Journal of the National Medical Association 96, 176–186.Daniell, W.E., Swan, S.S., McDaniel, M.M., Camp, J.E., Cohen, M.A., and Stebbins, J.G. (2006). Noise exposure and hearing loss prevention programmes after 20 years of regulations in the United States. Occupational and Environmental Medicine, 63, 343–351.Fausti, S.A., Wilmington, D.J., Helt, P.V., Helt, W.J., and Konrad-Martin, D. (2005). Hearing health and care: The need for improved hearing loss prevention and hearing conservation practices. Journal of Rehabilitation Research & Development, 42, 45–62.

environmental scan bibliography20
Environmental Scan Bibliography

Folmer, R.L., Griest, S.E., and Martin, W.H. (2002). Hearing conservation education programs for children: A review. Journal of School Health, 72, 51–57.Kujawa, S.G. and Liberman, M.C. (2006). Acceleration of age-related hearing loss by early noise exposure: Evidence of a misspent youth. Journal of Neuroscience, 26(7), 2115–2123.Niskar, A.S., Kieszak, S.M., Holmes, A.E., Esteban, E., Rubin, C., Brody, D.J. (2001). Estimated prevalence of hearing loss among children 6 to 19 years of age: the Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. 1988–1994. United States. Pediatrics, 108(1), 40–43.Sadhra, S., Jackson, C.A., Ryder, T., and Brown, M.J. (2002). Noise exposure and hearing loss among student employees working in university entertainment venues. The Annals of Occupational Hygiene, 46, 455–463.Serra, M.R., Biassoni, E.C., Richter, U., Minoldo, G., Franco, G., Abraham, S., Carignani, J.A., Joekes, S., and Yacci, M.R. (2005). Recreational noise exposure and its effects on the hearing of adolescents. Part I: An interdisciplinary long-term study. International Journal of Audiology, 44, 65–73.Weichbold, V., and Zorowka, P. (2003). Effects of a hearing protection campaign on the discotheque attendance habits of high-school students. International Journal of Audiology, 42, 489–493.Widen, S.E.O., and Erlandsson, W.I. (2004). The influence of socio-economic status on adolescent attitude to social noise and hearing protection. Noise & Health, 7, 59–70.