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Federal grant will support aging research, telehealth development in Central Virginia

Feb. 6, 2021, Fredericksburg, VA. A 2-year federal grant of $2.1M will support aging research and telehealth development in Spotsylvania County.

The award from the National Institute on Aging will be used by Healthcare Technologies and Methods to support their ongoing efforts to improve access to care and services through telehealth and digital media for individuals suffering from hearing loss. The grant will allow HTM to develop technology for hearing aid users to easily access videos and other content at home – and then securely transmit medical information to a healthcare providers’ website.

“TELLYHealth ™ has been designed to educate new hearing aid users about hearing aid use, maintenance and new communication methods. The clinical trial HTM successfully completed last year with patients up to 88 years of age demonstrated that TELLYHealth(tm) is both easy to use and clinically effective,” said Alan M. Letzt, president & CEO, HTM.

“TELLYHealth(tm) enables people to adapt faster to their hearing aids and enables hearing healthcare professionals to provide more timely and comprehensive patient-centered care. This new National Institute on Aging grant will enable HTM to fully prepare the patent-pending TELLYHealthTM platform for commercial use in the Commonwealth of Virginia, throughout the U.S. and internationally.”

Seventh District Rep. Abigail Spanberger applauded the announcement of the grant. “The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated the critical importance telemedicine plays in keeping Virginia’s seniors and other vulnerable populations connected to their healthcare providers,” Spanberger said. 

“This award demonstrates that Virginia remains a leader in healthcare innovation, particularly as we adapt to the unique circumstances of the current crisis. Hearing loss is a leading cause of disability, can lead to feelings of social isolation, and can significantly reduce quality of life, especially for seniors.

“With this significant funding from HHS, I’m hopeful that more seniors in our community and across the country will be able to safely access their appointments, master the use and care of their hearing aids, and maintain regular contact with their physicians and nurses.”

The HHS funding will be distributed through a Small Business Innovation Research Grant.

For more information, contact Alan Letzt at aletzt@HealthcareTM.com

HTM Completes NIH Commercialization Accelerator Program

Alan M. Letzt, President and CEO of Healthcare Technologies and Methods, LLC (HTM), is pleased to report that, “HTM has successfully completed NIH’s Commercialization Accelerator Program (CAP) and is excited about applying the TELLYHealth commercialization strategies developed during the program.”

The NIH CAP is a 9-month program that is designed to advance the commercialization objectives of companies that have received Phase II NIH SBIR grants. The program provides individualized assistance that enables participants to establish market and customer relevance, build commercial relationships, and focus on targeted revenue opportunities. Applicants are selected to participate in this NIH-funded program via a highly competitive process. Over the past 14 years, more than 1,000 companies have participated in the NIH CAP with many resulting success stories.

HTM Receives Phase II SBIR Grant from NIH

Alan M. Letzt, President and CEO of Healthcare Technologies and Methods, LLC (HTM), is pleased to announce that, “HTM was awarded a Phase II small business innovation research (SBIR) grant for NIH’s National Institute on Aging.”

The project, which is a competitive follow-on of HTM’s Phase I SBIR grant, aims to solve a significant public health problem: Aging patients with hearing loss often do not receive the educational reinforcement and aftercare required for optimal hearing aid use, maintenance and satisfaction. The current aftercare deficit too often results in hearing aids being rarely used, returned to the audiologist or left in a drawer. Furthermore, hearing loss, when left untreated in older adults, leads to an increased incidence of dementia, risk of falls, social isolation, depression, and reduced quality of life.

In this Phase II project, HTM will enhance and expand the capabilities and content of the Phase I prototype TELLYHealth system. HTM also will conduct a randomized controlled trial (RCT) of TELLYHealth with older adult patients who will be receiving their first hearing aids. The major hypotheses of the RCT are that TELLYHealth will empower patients who use TELLYHealth resulting in improved patient outcomes and reduced time required for audiologists to provide complete and effective after care. The TELLYHealth system developed in this project will be ready for commercial use.

HTM Completes Phase I SBIR Project for NIH

Alan M. Letzt, President and CEO of Healthcare Technologies and Methods, LLC (HTM), is pleased to report that, “HTM has successfully completed its Phase I small business innovation research (SBIR) project for NIH’s National Institute on Aging.”

The project aimed to solve a significant public health problem: Aging patients with hearing loss often do not receive the educational reinforcement and aftercare required for optimal hearing aid use, maintenance and satisfaction. The current aftercare deficit too often results in hearing aids being rarely used, returned to the audiologist or left in a drawer. Furthermore, hearing loss, when left untreated in older adults, leads to an increased incidence of dementia, risk of falls, social isolation, depression, and reduced quality of life.

After developing a prototype TELLYHealth system for this audiology application, HTM conducted a feasibility test with patients who were receiving their first hearing aids. The feasibility test demonstrated that TELLYHealth was both easy to use and valuable for patients aged 57 to 92. Also, the patients had a high level of satisfaction and improved hearing experiences. The participating audiologists also found TELLYHealth to be easy to use and valuable and they reported a high level of satisfaction with the system use and patient outcomes.

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HTM is a unique interdisciplinary healthcare company that specializes in processes and technologies for improved patient education and patient—provider communications. Our hallmarks include excellence in system usability, health literacy, and individualized patient-centered care.

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