The Columbus Wellness Center is now part of a sound investment: an Induction Loop System to aid visitors with hearing impairments.
Plans are now underway to include a state-of-the-art Induction Loop System inside our new facility’s 1,500-square-foot multipurpose room — where seminars, conferences, meetings and speaker sessions will be held regularly. The multipurpose room will be partitioned with soundproof dividers, and both sides of the room will utilize this audio technology. The “looping” system is being installed by an expert audio technician … and will be the very first found in the city of Columbus.
What is an Induction Loop?
An Induction Loop, also known as a Hearing Loop or T-Loop, is an assistive listening system that provides facility access to those with hearing impairments. It takes a sound source and transfers it directly to a hearing aid, without any background noise.
Induction Loops have become the norm in Europe and Australia, and are quickly becoming more popular in the United States. Because looping is so easy and beneficial, hearing advocacy groups are supporting their installation in taxis, kiosks, schools, churches, concert halls and stadiums.
How does “Looping” work?
1. A sound source, such as a voice, TV, cinema sound system or other audio system is captured using a microphone or through a line-out connection.
2. The sound signal is then connected to a special amplifier that generates a current to pass the signal to an induction loop, usually made of copper tape or wire.
3. The copper wire induction loop typically surrounds the area where the listening audience is located and produces a magnetic field.
4. The magnetic field is picked up by the Telecoil (“T-coil”) found in nearly all hearing aids or cochlear devices of audience members.
5. The hearing aid/cochlear device tailors the sound to the specific needs of the individual, delivering it directly into the ear canal — without background noise and with the full spectrum of sound frequencies required for clarity.
6. The number of people who can benefit from the system at one time is only limited by the amount who can fit in the “looped” area! Expensive receivers are not required, and users can avoid the inconvenience of asking for and having to wear a headset that labels them hard-of-hearing.
This Induction Loop purchase was largely made possible by funding from the Columbus Sertoma Club. Made up of 65 local volunteers, the club improves the quality of life for those at risk of or impacted by hearing loss. Tom Zimmerman, its chairman, presented looping technology capabilities to Columbus Community Hospital’s Board of Directors — and the Board quickly approved funding for the entire system. Moving forward, the Columbus Community Hospital Foundation will be managing the funds and any next steps.
“We are committed to building a healthier community, and the addition of the Induction Loop System to our Wellness Center’s multipurpose room will do just that — by bringing enhanced sound clarity to our health seminars and events,” explains Dr. Jeffrey Gotschall, Board Chairperson. “Those with hearing impairments will be able to easily hear speakers and health-related content loud and clear. We are thrilled to be sharing this technology with our community.”
The construction of our Columbus Wellness Center is moving right along, with the new facility slated to open in the fall. It will be a wonderful place for area residents to learn about and establish lifelong healthy habits, offering fitness programs, physical and occupational therapy, community health classes and a test kitchen to teach people healthier eating behaviors.