The Federal Government estimates that ten million Australians will suffer some level of hearing loss by 2050. With approximately one quarter of the population likely to be affected, the impact on Australian society, its economy, and its support services will be immense.
In response to this, researchers, academics, CEOs and politicians came together on 17 April to officially launch the Australian Hearing Hub at Macquarie University. This ground-breaking new facility brings hearing industries and related organisations under one roof, providing new opportunities for collaboration to improve the quality of life for those affected by hearing loss.
The inaugural conference, entitled Language, literacy and cognition in children with hearing impairment was opened in the morning by Senator McLucas, Minister for Human Services, whilst the building was launched in the afternoon at a special reception for tenants and partners.
Professor Jim Piper, who will retire later this year as Macquarie University’s Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Research, jointly unveiled a plaque bearing his name, as the champion behind the development. He initially proposed the idea to the Federal Government, whose approval for funding helped make it a reality. Senator Faulkner also unveiled the plaque on behalf of the Government. The Senator is a graduate of Macquarie University, and a former member of University Council.
The Australian Hearing Hub is a revolutionary independent research facility inspired by the interdisciplinary working environment of the University. Featuring the National Acoustic Laboratories’ anechoic chamber, specially designed ‘echo chambers’, and three MEGs – including one specifically for children – it offers state-of-the-art facilities to more than 2000 professionals from some of the country’s best hearing and allied health organisations, together with staff, students and researchers from one of the country’s leading research universities.
Partners at the Australian Hearing Hub include Macquarie University, Australian Hearing, the National Acoustic Laboratories, Cochlear Ltd, the Royal Institute for Deaf and Blind Children, The Shepherd Centre, the Sydney Cochlear Implant Centre, and the ARC Centre of Excellence in Cognition and its Disorders. The Hearing CRC will also open a secondary office in the building.
Media Contact: Paul Wild
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