Education Section

Question regarding hard of hearing (potentil) potential

By Max Eskelson posted 03-27-2020 13:11


Greetings to all

First of all, let me give a virtual high five to our colleagues working in hospitals during this time.  Please know our thoughts are with you. 
Now, to the meat of the question:  I recently received an email from an advisor re: a “hard of hearing” student.

At first glance, you might think this person CANNOT / COULD NOT possibly exist in our profession.   Then I started looking at it as a person of science.  After thinking about it, is there anything in the science that says this person cannot become an RRT?  i have seen physicians in wheelchairs, with glases and hearing aids.    They all performed as expected.

Some questions:

  1. Is there a list of hearing requirements from the AARC or fellow schools outlining the minimum hearing requirements?
  2. If the person has a hearing deficit and it can be improved with the use of hearing aids or amplified scopes, is there a problem?
  3. At what point do you not even allow this person to apply for a position in your new cohort?

I do not  want to not allow a person to achieve their goal; however, I do not want to give false hope to a student and have them end up with debt and no job.  This is a tough position.

I look forward to your responses

Stay safe and be smart





03-31-2020 19:58

Thanks Kristin!



03-31-2020 10:02

I teach at a community college and we had a similar experience.  We couldn't tell the student they couldn't enroll but we also had to be up front with them.  We asked them a series of tough questions; could you safely assess a patient and make good decisions based on what you heard?  Could you safely work in a vent unit and hear all the alarms and be able to safely care for the patient?  Could you hear a code being called overhead and safely care for the patient in a chaotic environment?  
The student made the decision to not enroll in our program and chose Physical Therapy Assistant instead.  
I hope this helps.  Good luck!