Audiometric Testing Technicians
Or put another way, 'who's the folks what's going to be fiddling about with my employees' ears?'.
Adam - Audiometry God
Adam (which would be me making me entirely unsure if this should be written in the first person or third and which sounds the least insane) is fully experienced and has been doing these for two decades now, long before the current Noise Regs were a twinkle in their creator's eye and going back to the days when audiometers had proper big buttons and dials to fiddle with. Adam has trained GPs in audiometric testing for health screening, trained occupational health departments and occupational health consultancies in how to do workplace audiometry, and conducted tens of thousands of audiometric tests up and down the country. He has provided training in noise risks and audiometric testing to employers on behalf of the HSE on several occasions, and worked with insurers defending claims.
Rob (The Vicar) - Hearing Munchkin
For reasons which are still not fully understood, Rob decided to come and work alongside Adam in their previous employment, where Rob worked entirely on health screening covering audiometric testing, spirometry and skin assessments. Rob, who has the air of a genial country vicar and even in his sleep is probably more smartly dressed than Adam has ever been in his entire life, is joining The Noise Chap at the end of July 2018 as the main audiometry technician. Rob initially was trained under Adam's expert and wise tutelage but then also attended British Society of Audiology approved training by an external company to get the all-important 3rd party verification that he knows his onions. Rob has conducted something over 30,000 hearing tests now which is more than most health professionals see in their entire working lifetime. This means Rob is hugely experienced at determining which audiometric test results need some kind of further investigation and which are perfectly fine as they are. Hence, when the word on da street was that he was looking for new employment it was too good an opportunity to miss so he was scooped up.
Audiometric testing technicians have a brain
Many audiometric testing-providing companies use the screening technician as a simple data-gathering tool and they are not allowed to use their noggin or experience to look at results and make a judgement call based on what they are seeing. In those companies they simply refer all unilateral, Category 3 and Category 4 cases, which causes extra stress for the attendee and employer, and less charitably, where the referral is handily to an in-house GP or nurse, means the provider gets to charge the client again for referrals creating something of a financial reward for an increased number of referrals.
In The Noise Chap's audiometric testing, the audiometry technicians use their experience to make judgements as to whether further action is required and this is not simply based on the category of result. People may score a poorer audiometric test result but with an underlying or known medical condition which supports the result and in these cases a referral is unlikely. Or they may have a poor audiometry result but the Technician is able to make the judgement call that it is nothing to do with work so will recommend they see a GP for a closer look at it, but will let the employer know this is nothing to do with work so the employer need not spend time getting involved in it. This means that the employer gets to focus much more easily on the people with an issue which has a potential impact at work and doesn't get tied up in the excess referrals which simply referring everyone generates.
Within The Noise Chap audiometric testing process, to give consistency on these judgement calls, from August 2018 when he starts, Rob's finished reports will all go to Adam before going on to the client to make sure we agree on the way each case has been diagnosed and the actions recommended for it.