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Thursday, October 5, 2017   

9:00 a.m. PST / 10:00 a.m. MST / 11:00 a.m. CST / 12:00 p.m. EST

Registration Deadline: Tuesday, October 3, 2017, by 12:00 p.m. CST

Hearing Conservation Overall

This presentation will provide information on "why" we need to put programs in place to protect the hearing health of employees. Included will be discussion of both the benefits to the employee as well as benefits to the employer. As part of the "why" discussion, participants will learn about the auditory and non-auditory effects of hearing loss on the individual. Included will be a brief introduction to the regulatory requirements as well as what might make a Hearing Conservation or Hearing Loss Prevention Program most effective. There will be some discussion of the role of CAOHC in ensuring that good training occurs for the Occupational Hearing Conservationists who carry out the daily functions in these programs.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Differentiate between auditory and non-auditory effects caused by hazardous noise exposure.
  2. Estimate the prevalence of noise induced hearing loss among different noise-exposed populations.
  3. Recognize major policy makers related to hearing conservation in the United States.

Continuing Education

Presenter: Vickie Tuten, AuD, CCC-A, CPS/A

Dr. Vickie Tuten currently serves as Branch Chief of Prevention and Surveillance for the Defense Hearing   Center of Excellence. She recently retired from the Army after 27 years. Her military audiology experience includes clinical audiologist, hearing conservation program manager, audiology staff officer, and Program Director for the Otolaryngology Technologist Program. She has also worked in the civilian sector as both a clinical and occupational audiologist. Dr. Tuten holds a Master’s degree from the University of North Carolina an Audiology Doctorate from Central Michigan University. Dr. Tuten is incoming Coordinator for the Coordinating Committee for the Audiology and Public Health Specialty Interest Group (SIG 8) with the American Speech Language and Hearing Association (ASHA). She is currently President Elect for the National Hearing Conservation Association (NHCA). She has previously served as Treasurer for NHCA, President of the Military Audiology Association (MAA), and has represented MAA on the Council for Accreditation in Occupational Hearing Conservation (CAOHC). She holds certification as a CAOHC Course Director and Professional Supervisor.

Thursday, November 2, 2017   

9:00 a.m. PST / 10:00 a.m. MST / 11:00 a.m. CST / 12:00 p.m. EST

Registration Deadline: Tuesday, October 31, 2017, by 12:00 p.m. CST


Hearing Conservation Regulations and Best Practices for Prevention

This presentation will discuss regulations that define employer responsibilities surrounding hearing conservation programs have structured company policies and practices for decades.  Too, these regulations provide a starting place for employers who aim to prevent occupational noise-induced hearing loss. This presentation will provide an overview of regulatory requirements pertaining to hearing conservation programs as well as propose best practices supported by CAOHC, NHCA. NIOSH and other professional organizations.  

Learning Objectives:

  1. List three examples of best practice policies that are considered to be more protective than the OSHA regulatory requirements.
  2. Differentiate between a Standard Threshold Shift and a recordable hearing shift according to US OSHA federal requirements.
  3. Name two employer responsibilities that are required by federal regulations when the permissible exposure level is exceeded.

Continuing Education

Presenter: Laurie Wells, AuD, FAAA, CPS/A

Dr. Wells is a board-certified audiologist and Senior Acoustics RegulatoryAffairs Specialist for 3M Occupational Health  & Environmental Safety Division, a consulting firm specializing in prevention of noise-induced hearing loss through a “best practices” approach in noise measurement, noise control, and occupational audiology review and management of hearing conservation programs. Laurie received her Master’s degree from University of Arizona and her AuD, degree from Pennsylvania School of Optometry, School of Audiology. Dr. Wells is a certified Professional Supervisor of the Audiometric Component of a Hearing Conservation Program. As a consultant to companies ationwide, she provides professional audiology review of hearing conservation programs to ensure effective protection from noise hazards to both employers and employees. This includes audiometric database management, assessment of hearing protection devices, work-related determination for recordkeeping purposes, employee/employer education, and employee noise exposure assessment.  Dr. Wells is a certified course director for the Council for Accreditation in Occupational Hearing Conservation and is frequently one of the top 25 most active course directors. She has also taught numerous seminars, graduate audiology courses, and has given numerous presentations at state and national conferences. Dr. Wells is past-president of the National Hearing Conservation Association (NHCA), and served on the NHCA board from 1999 – 2007. She represents the American Academy of Audiology on the CAOHC Council, as of 2007. She is a fellow of the American Academy of Audiology and member of the Colorado Academy of Audiology, and National Hearing Conservation Association.

Thursday, February 1, 2018   

9:00 a.m. PST / 10:00 a.m. MST / 11:00 a.m. CST / 12:00 p.m. EST

Registration Deadline: Tuesday, January 30, 2018, by 12:00 p.m. CST

Noise Measurement

This presentation will provide an overview of the measurement and control of noise, including an introduction to that dear friend/archenemy of hearing loss prevention (the decibel), the equipment we use to measure noise (sound level meters, dosimeters, octave band analyzers, oh my!), how we can reduce noise exposures, and how all this relates to protecting people's hearing.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Identify workers who may be at risk for excessive noise exposure.
  2. Quantify the risk – Job Hazard Analysis.
  3. Identify dominant noise sources for Engineering Noise Control.
  4. Identify quiet areas for Administrative Noise Control.
  5. Understand the noise characteristics for the selection of hearing protection devices.
  6. Understand worker environment if a change in their hearing occurs.
  7. Demonstrate how to conduct sound level checks within the audiometric test booth.

Continuing Education

Presenter: Charlie Moritz, MS, INCE Bd Cert.

Charles Moritz is the Vice President of Research and Development for the Blachford Acoustics Group where his team focuses on the development of treatments to reduce noise exposure and improve sound quality.  Charles has been active in noise measurement and control for more than 30 years and holds degrees in Aerospace Engineering and Music from the University of Cincinnati, a Master’s Degree in Acoustics from The Pennsylvania State University, is Board Certified in noise control engineering by the Institute of Noise Control Engineering, and a CAOHC Course Director.  In addition to more than 30 conference presentations, his publications include authoring or co-authoring chapters in the Hearing Conservation Manual, The Occupational Environment: Its Evaluation, Control, and Management, and the Encyclopedia of Acoustics.

Thursday, March 1, 2018   

9:00 a.m. PST / 10:00 a.m. MST / 11:00 a.m. CST / 12:00 p.m. EST

Registration Deadline: Tuesday, February 27, 2018, by 12:00 p.m. CST


The Audiogram

Monitoring audiometry is a key element of the hearing loss prevention program.  The audiogram is used to identify significant changes in an employees hearing and to evaluate the overall effectiveness of the hearing loss prevention program.  This session will provide participants with in-depth knowledge of different types of audiograms used in monitoring audiometry programs, how to read the audiogram, and provide a broad understanding of information the pure-tone air conduction audiogram provides to the employee, employer, and hearing health professional.  Common audiometric configurations and their associated illnesses as well as problem audiograms and how to recognize them will also be discussed.  

Learning Objectives:

  1. Describe different types of audiograms used in a hearing conservation program.
  2. Recognize a problem audiogram.
  3. Identify different audiometric configurations and common findings associated with each.
  4. Explain the limits of information that can be inferred by a pure tone air conduction audiogram alone.
  5. Explain the audiogram in terms of frequency and intensity.

Continuing Education

Presenter: John "Andy" Merkley, AuD, CCC-A, CPS/A

Dr. John ‘Andy’ Merkley is an audiologist with the United States Army and is currently assigned as the Army Liaison Officer to the Defense Hearing Center of Excellence and Regional Health Command - Central Audiology Consultant.  Over the past 20 years, Andy has served in a variety of capacities with responsibilities for hearing conservation and clinical audiology services for Army Installations with populations ranging from 10 – 30 thousand Soldiers and noise-exposed DoD civilians.  His past duty assignments include Ft. Drum, NY, Wuerzburg, Germany, Baghdad, Iraq, Army Public Health Command Europe Region, and Ft. Carson, CO.   He holds a double Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Arts and Sciences and Communication Disorders from Utah State University, a Master of Science in Audiology from Utah State University, and a Doctor of Audiology from Central Michigan University.  Andy is one of the Military Audiology Association representatives to the Council for Accreditation in Occupational Hearing Conservation (CAOHC), where he serves as Chair of the Occupational Hearing Conservationist and Course Director Committee and Vice Chair of Education on the CAOHC Executive Committee.  He is a member of the American Speech-Language Hearing Association, National Hearing Conservation Association, and Military Audiology Association.  He holds the Certificate of Clinical Competence in Audiology (CCC-A), and is a CAOHC Certified Professional Supervisor of the Audiometric Monitoring Program (CPS/A).


Thursday, April 5, 2018   

9:00 a.m. PST / 10:00 a.m. MST / 11:00 a.m. CST / 12:00 p.m. EST

Registration Deadline: Tuesday, April 3, 2018, by 12:00 p.m. CST

Education & Training

While the ideal solution to a noisy environment is to remove the noise, in many situations, it simply isn't possible. When this is the case, it's not enough to rely solely on compliance with regulations to reduce risk. We need to educate employees thoroughly on the benefits of hearing conservation and the crucial steps they should take to safeguard their hearing. Employees must participate actively for hearing conservation to be successful; we need to engage and interest them in their own protection. Effective hearing conservation cannot be achieved without the combined efforts of employers, supervisors, and the employees themselves. By focusing on the reasons behind hearing conservation, and providing some different approaches, we can better reach these individuals to make them a part of the solution to preventable hearing loss.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Define OSHA requirements for education and training in a hearing conservation program.
  2. Describe how the factors of commitment, communication, and cooperation relate to a successful hearing loss prevention program.
  3. Apply the principles of motivational interviewing to employee interactions to elicit "behavior change" that contributes to positive health outcomes and improved communication.

Continuing Education

Presenter: Carol Snyderwine, MHA, MA, CCC-A, CPS/A

Carol Snyderwine is an audiologist and has worked over 30 years for the Cleveland Clinic Health System where she manages a mobile, occupational hearing conservation program. This mobile unit provides on-site hearing tests in the greater Cleveland/Akron area. Carol reviews audiograms and provides follow-up audiometry for those workers having problem audiograms.  Carol also reviews audiograms and consults for industries having their own in-house hearing conservation programs. She successfully completed the Professional Supervisor of Audiometry certification in March 2005.



Thursday, May 3, 2018   

9:00 a.m. PST / 10:00 a.m. MST / 11:00 a.m. CST / 12:00 p.m. EST

Registration Deadline: Tuesday, May 1, 2018, by 12:00 p.m. CST

Hearing Protection

As hearing conservationists we can measure, assess, document, and counsel, but when it comes to effective intervention, an important tool, sometimes our only tool, is a hearing protector. Therefore it behooves us to be knowledgeable about hearing protection devices and how to optimize their use in hearing conservation programs. This presentation discusses the types of hearing protectors available today, the requirements for testing and labeling with a Noise Reduction Rating, and the differences between NRRs and attenuation achieved in practice by individuals who use them. Finally, the rewards and benefits gained by implementing hearing protector fit testing as a recommended best practice will be highlighted.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Identify the available types of hearing protection devices and describe their respective advantages and disadvantages.
  2. Explain the meaning and value of the EPA’s Noise Reduction Rating (NRR) and differentiate it from alternative methods of predicting effective employee protection.
  3. Explain the benefits of hearing protector fit testing and evaluate the pros and cons of the various systems available to accomplish that process.

Continuing Education

Presenter: Elliott Berger, MS, INCE Bd Cert.

Elliott is a Division Scientist for 3M’s Personal Safety Division.  For 40 years he has studied hearing protection, hearing conservation, and related topics, and authored 14 textbook chapters and over 70 published articles.  He was the lead editor of the best-selling 4th and 5th editions of the AIHANoise Manual.  He chairs the ANSI working group on hearing protector attenuation, served on a National Academy of Science committee on hearing loss in the military, is a Fellow of the ASA, Past-President of NHCA, Fellow of the AIHA and Past-Chair of its Noise Committee, a past Board Member of CAOHC, a member of ASHA and AAA, and a recipient of NHCA’s Lifetime Achievement Award.  Among his favorite sounds is the silvery flutter of the leaves of a stand of river birch tickled by a cool evening breeze.


Thursday, June 7, 2018   

9:00 a.m. PST / 10:00 a.m. MST / 11:00 a.m. CST / 12:00 p.m. EST

Registration Deadline: Tuesday, June 5, 2018, by 12:00 p.m. CST

Recordability Issues

Identification of work-related hearing loss has long been one of the most complicated and controversial areas of government-mandated injury/illness recordkeeping. Effective in 2000, MSHA provided a new definition of "reportable" hearing loss in its revised noise standard, Part 62. OSHA also defined new criteria for recording occupational hearing loss with its recent revision to 29 CFR 1904 (effective in 2003, with a separate Form 300 column in effect January 1, 2004). This workshop presentation will focus on the basic requirements of MSHA and OSHA recordkeeping regulations, as well as implications for professional review of audiograms and determination of work-relatedness. Although compliance with recordkeeping rules is important to the ultimate goal of tracking incidence of work-related hearing loss, emphasis will also be placed on best practices for an effective hearing loss prevention program.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Define basic requirements of United States recordkeeping regulations, as well as implications for professional review of audiograms and determination of work-relatedness.
  2. Summarize the recordability decision-making process.
  3. Compare case studies on recordability.

Continuing Education

Presenter: D. Bruce Kirchner, MD,  MPH, CPS/A

Dr. Kirchner recently retired as the Global Medical Leader for Procter & Gamble’s Household Care business, with responsibilities for assuring the occupational health of 30,000 employees in manufacturing and research.  Additionally, he was the system owner for hearing conservation across the company. He retired from the U.S. Army in 1995 after 21 ears of service in which he was involved in hearing conservation in field units, as well as industrial operations. Dr. Kirchner has a B.A. in English from the Virginia Military Institute, an M.D. from the University Of Pittsburgh School Of Medicine, and an MPH from the University Of Pittsburgh School Of Public Health. He is board certified in Internal Medicine, Occupational Medicine, and Preventive Medicine & Public Health. Dr. Kirchner is the ACOEM liaison to the National Hearing Conservation Association. He is also a Fellow of the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine. Dr. Kirchner is appointed to the Council for Accreditation in Occupational Hearing Conservation representing ACOEM. Dr. Kirchner currently serves CAOHC as its Past-Chair and as Committee Chair of the Professional Supervisor Committee.