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Dr. Matthew Bromwich

Location: Ottawa, ON

Award: Award of Distinction

Category: Medical Device

Year: 2018

Innovation:

SHOEBOX Audiometry

SHOEBOX Audiometry makes hearing testing easy, accurate, and accessible. This e-health enabled, point-of-care platform includes an iPad-based interactive audiometer that is smaller than a shoebox to perform clinical grade hearing tests.

Nearly half a billion people live with disabling hearing loss, yet 80% have no access to hearing healthcare. Despite the high demand, most primary care providers are unable to screen for hearing loss, due to limited access to tools and trained professionals. Consequently, patients are often tested in hospitals, a costly and cumbersome model.

Dr. Matthew Bromwich recognized expense as the main barrier to hearing testing, which prevents diagnosis and treatment. Interventions to prevent, identify, and address hearing loss are cost-effective and can benefit individuals. However, these treatments cannot be implemented if hearing loss is not diagnosed.

Dr. Bromwich was determined to empower more testing, by more people, in more locations. In 2010, together with audiologists, engineers and IT professionals, Dr. Bromwich began the research and development for a 21st-century diagnostic hearing test. By 2014, SHOEBOX Audiometry received clinical validation for use as a diagnostic audiometer by some of the world’s leading institutions, and was launched commercially.

SHOEBOX is having a profound impact. Through partnerships with NGOs, more than 40 countries around the world are testing SHOEBOX, the first FDA and Health Canada approved mobile hearing test. Currently, it’s being used by thousands of clinicians worldwide, who have conducted nearly 100,000 clinically accurate hearing tests.

SHOEBOX also has the potential to function beyond testing and diagnostics and is currently being developed into an AI diagnostic tool and treatment facilitator. Dr. Bromwich is embracing the enormous opportunity and responsibility to seek new knowledge from this data, which can be used to help understand and solve the global problem of hearing loss.