Communication Strategies Between Occupational Hearing Conservationists and Spanish-Speaking Workers This survey study investigated current hearing loss prevention practices among 300 certified occupational hearing conservationists (OHCs) with regard to service delivery to Spanish-speaking workers. OHCs responded to a written survey designed to investigate the current service delivery methods and strategies used by OHCs when providing services to Spanish-speaking workers specific ... Article
Article  |   October 01, 2011
Communication Strategies Between Occupational Hearing Conservationists and Spanish-Speaking Workers
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Emily Wakefield
    University of Northern Colorado, Greeley, CO
  • Deanna K. Meinke
    University of Northern Colorado, Greeley, CO
Article Information
Cultural & Linguistic Diversity
Article   |   October 01, 2011
Communication Strategies Between Occupational Hearing Conservationists and Spanish-Speaking Workers
SIG 14 Perspectives on Communication Disorders and Sciences in Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CLD) Populations, October 2011, Vol. 18, 63-70. doi:10.1044/cds18.3.63
SIG 14 Perspectives on Communication Disorders and Sciences in Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CLD) Populations, October 2011, Vol. 18, 63-70. doi:10.1044/cds18.3.63

This survey study investigated current hearing loss prevention practices among 300 certified occupational hearing conservationists (OHCs) with regard to service delivery to Spanish-speaking workers. OHCs responded to a written survey designed to investigate the current service delivery methods and strategies used by OHCs when providing services to Spanish-speaking workers specific to the audiometric testing, hearing protection, and training program components of hearing loss prevention programs (HLPPs). Data analyses outcomes indicated that there is a statistically significant relationship between certified OHCs’ perceived proficiency in Spanish (ability to speak, understand, and/or read/write Spanish) and their perceived ability to communicate (effectively exchange information), their competence level (possessing the requisite knowledge and skills), and their confidence (self-perceived ability) when providing HLPP services to workers who primarily speak Spanish. There is a significant difference between the services provided to Spanish-speaking workers by Spanish-speaking and non-Spanish-speaking OHCs. Consequently, Spanish-speaking workers may not be receiving care comparable to their English-speaking coworkers. Implications from this study suggest the need for expanded training of certified OHCs relative to multicultural/linguistic issues and additional language-relevant hearing loss prevention resources to effectively provide HLPP services to this growing minority population.

Acknowledgments
This research project was funded in part by a student research award from the National Hearing Conservation Association Foundation. The authors would also like to acknowledge CAOHC for their cooperation and provision of information necessary to conduct this research project.
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