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Team Members:
  • Shubhayu Bhattacharyay
  • Eshan Joshi
  • Annie Liang
  • Ben Straus
  • Cindy SeYeon Choi
  • Alex Rovalino
  • Mohan Peddada
  • Rumani Kafle
  • Carrie Nieman, MD
  • Shababa Matin
  • Kunal Parikh, PhD
  • Kevin Franck, PhD
  • Tilak Ratnanather, DPhil


Within the last decade, the world’s leading dementia investigators have uncovered a decisive relationship between age-related hearing loss and dementia, identifying hearing loss as the leading modifiable risk factor for incident dementia and cognitive decline. However, no hearing loss solution in the market addresses the unique physiological, psycho-behavioral, and socioeconomic needs of dementia patients with hearing loss. As a result, despite validated evidence that hearing treatment can improve long-term outcomes for dementia patients, the rate of hearing technology use among dementia patients remains among the worst after correcting for age, race, family income, and geographical location. By August 2020, the FDA Re-authorization Act of 2017 will authorize the over the counter (OTC) sale of hearing devices intended to treat mild-to-moderate hearing loss. We recognize this as a unique opportunity to introduce the first direct-to-consumer solution targeted for older patients with dementia, bypassing stifling market incentives and augmenting access by an underserved population. In working with Access HEARS, a non-profit founded by our clinical advisor, we directly assess the needs of this target population, interview patients, caretakers, and health care providers in our design process, and conduct proof-of-concept trials.

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