'Researches futile unless they serve the underprivileged'

National workshop on speech and hearing begins in city

Advanced researches become futile unless they serve the underprivileged sections of the society, said C Basavaraju, Registrar, University of Mysore.

Addressing participants at a two-day national workshop on ‘Speech Specific Auditory Evoked Potentials and its Applications,’ here, on Thursday, he said, there is a need to cater to the needs of hearing impaired persons with latest technological advances.
Though advancements reach the creamy layer of the society, the underprivileged remain deprived of them.

Basavaraju opined that the facilities should not be restricted to urban areas, but should reach the rural people. He said, while drafting the Indian Constitution, the importance of speech was highlighted with freedom to speech and expression. Thus, personality development is possible with successful expression of opinion and ideas.

Affordable price

He enunciated the need to provide hearing testing facilities, hearing aids and other devices at affordable prices aside from providing them free of cost to a few sections of the society.

M N Nagaraja, Director (Technical), SRC Institute of Speech and Hearing, Bangalore, underlined the significance of using speech as a stimulus to evaluate the neural pathway of the auditory system.

He stressed on clinical and experimental findings pertaining to usage of a complex signal like speech.

Sharing his experiences, he said, he too faced difficulties as a student as well as a professional earlier, regarding neural processing of speech in the auditory system.
There were no means to measure speech. The findings of the lab became clinical only during the 1980s, he added.   

R Mahesh, Director, Medical Education Institutions, JSS Mahavidyapeetha, said, technologically advanced equipment were necessary to carry out tests pertaining to speech and hearing.

A total of 80 delegates from various speech and hearing institutions in the country took part in the programme, apart from guest faculties from Manipal University, All India Institute of Speech and Hearing, SRC Institute of Speech and Hearing, and Bharatiya Vidyapeetha, Pune.

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