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What, why and how?
A cochlear implant is a small, electronic device, surgically placed under the skin, behind the ear. It provides hearing to a person who is profoundly deaf or severely hard of hearing by bypassing the damaged cochlea and sending sounds electronically to the brain. It consists of an internal implant which is surgically inserted into the inner ear, and an external sound processor that is worn on the ear or the body.

Severely hearing impaired children and adults receive limited help from hearing aids and they are most in need of cochlear implants. Due to the high cost and limited medical insurance coverage, few can afford this life changing device. This is where the Foundation makes a difference by raising funds for both children and adults with limited financial means.

The cost of a cochlear implant device differs between R380,000 and R400,000 depending on the system. Furthermore, hospital and surgery fees, programming and rehabilitation costs are also required.

A cochlear implant will help these patients to hear and speak again. The majority of early implanted deaf children are able to develop normal speech and language, attend mainstream schools and become independent in the future.



The Team
The Team

To determine if a person is a candidate for a cochlear implant, a comprehensive evaluation will be conducted by the multidisciplinary team of experts at the Ear Institute Cochlear Implant Unit, comprising of ENT surgeons, radiologists, audiologists, rehabilitation specialists, cochlear implant specialists, psychologists, and the Foundation fundraising manager.

When they approve a patient for the cochlear implant procedure, the patient must rely on funds in order to proceed. With the funding obtained, the timeline for the surgery booking is approximately 2-3 months. The patient is closely monitored after the surgery and the switching on of the device takes place exactly one month after the implant.

Continuous rehabilitation and speech therapy takes place after the cochlear implant to ensure maximal development of the hearing and speech ability with a cochlear implant.

To support a child in need of a cochlear implant, click here: