Oticon has appointed a Chief Audiologist, Thomas Behrens, the Denmark-based hearing aid company announced. Behrens, the head of audiology at Oticon and director of the Centre for Applied Audiology Research at Oticon global headquarters, will step into the new role.
Behrens has been a member of the Oticon family—part of the William Demant Group—since 1998. He is currently responsible for clinical research and professional communication in new products for Oticon. The research spans many areas of hearing science, involves both children as well as elderly people, and typically counts 15 research projects globally on an ongoing basis. Prior to this, Bahrens spent 10 years as a researcher and project manager at the Oticon Research Centre, Eriksholm. His areas of expertise include spatial hearing, signal processing for hearing aids, technical audiology, outcome measures and methods for laboratory, as well as field trials. Thomas holds a master’s degree in applied signal processing and a bachelor’s degree in business administration.
Behrens has been a driving force behind the development of BrainHearing™, part of Oticon’s cognitive hearing science research, helping to put substance behind Oticon’s belief that hearing care is important to general healthcare, according to the company. Since 2015, Behrens and his team have demonstrated, through research collaborations, that the newest Oticon Opn™ hearing aids can reduce load on the brain and improve recall, and shown that hearing aid technology should be designed not only to improve hearing, but also to assist the cognitive processes the brain uses to make sense of sound, said Oticon. Behrens has led the team that invented the algorithm behind Open Sound Navigator™ (OSN) and was instrumental in delivering methods and professional communications for the first BrainHearing™ launch from Oticon.
Commenting on the appointment, Ole Asboe Jørgensen, president of Oticon Brand, Global, said: “Thomas Behrens has made invaluable contributions to Oticon for two decades. He is adept in BrainHearing™ research with enviable experience and knowledge of how audiology and technology can marry in order to advance hearing solutions. The new role will provide Thomas with an exciting opportunity to develop new research methods in order to strengthen our unprecedented position as an evidence-based hearing health care provider, and to encourage continual audiology innovation to achieve our goal of delivering hearing aid solutions that can make a real difference to people’s lives.
“We strongly believe that hearing care should be about more than simple sound amplification which is why we dedicate so much resource to the continued study of cognitive hearing science and its effect on health care. Appointing a Chief Audiologist cements our commitment to the application of new, life-changing technologies in our hearing aids to deliver the very best solutions to our hearing aid users so that they can live a fully active and social life.”