Special Photo: Georgians who are deaf or hard of hearing can now obtain a new amplified cordless phone, the Clarity XLC3.4, which its maker says amplifies incoming sounds up to 50 decibels, and boosts outgoing speech by up to 15 decibels.
Southern Crescent residents, who are deaf, or hard of hearing –– from one percent hearing loss, to profound deafness –– can now obtain a new amplified, cordless phone for free, thanks to the Georgia Council for the Hearing Impaired, Inc. (GACHI).
GACHI is a statewide non-profit organization that provides a variety of assistive services to the deaf, and hard of hearing.
Through the Georgia Telecommunications Equipment Distribution Program, the state’s hearing council distributes specialized telecommunications equipment and training to qualified applicants who have difficulty hearing on a standard phone.
The new phone, Clarity XLC3.4 amplifies incoming sounds up to 50 decibels. The new phone also has helpful features for those with low vision, and arthritis, and it boosts outgoing speech by up to 15 decibels.
Georgia residents, who are certified as having hearing loss, can obtain the phone by completing an application, providing a copy of a landline phone bill, a certificate of need form from a physician, proof of income, and a copy of a driver’s license, or state-issued identification card.
The new phone was developed by Clarity, a division of Plantronics that provides “smart communication solutions” for seniors.
“GACHI was founded to provide Georgia’s hard of hearing community with information, resources and powerful communication solutions, like Clarity’s digital amplified phones,” said Sondra Rhoades Johnson, GACHI’s executive director. “We serve people of all ages, with minor hearing loss to complete deafness, and other issues that often accompany hearing loss,” she said.
“ ... We are constantly searching for the best solutions that will meet all of these needs,” Johnson said. “This new phone is a great solution, and we’re excited to make it available for the hundreds of thousands with hearing loss in our state.”
The XLC3.4 uses Digital Clarity PowerTM to amplify incoming sounds and remove unwanted and distracting noises, much like a hearing aid, according to Johnson. The XLC3.4 also provides assistance with other common health challenges. For example, the phone features talking caller ID, which announces the incoming caller, and a talking dial pad with back-lit buttons to help people with low vision, Johnson said.
The XLC3.4 phone has large, soft-touch buttons on the handset and phone base, which are spaced apart to be easily accessible to those with dexterity issues, or arthritis. It includes a talking caller ID, in which the handset speaks the number of the incoming caller.
“Hearing loss impacts millions across the U.S., yet the issue is often overlooked, and few are aware that solutions like amplified telephones even exist,” said Carsten Trads, president of Clarity. “With GACHI’s help, hopefully, more people in Georgia will find the assistance they need for their hearing loss,” Trads said.
For more information on the XLC3.4 phone, visit www.clarityproducts.com, or call 1-800-426-3738.