"Hearing Aid UK talks to Amrik Arora, the ear health blogger and founder of EarGuru - India’s answer to hearing-impaired education. Here he tells us about his dedicated focus on creating awareness about hearing healthcare that is not only relative but accessible to everyone"
Kimberley Bradshaw - Hearing Aid UK
Was there a pivotal moment in your life that jump-started your passion for audiology? What is your involvement at EarGuru?
I have been involved in audiology and assistive listening device ecosystems for over 20 years. My last association before starting EarGuru was with Starkey India as a Director of Business Development. I am the sole founder of EarGuru and am instrumental in generating content and planning growth strategies.
Besides developing market network, I used to actively interact with patients to get feedback on fitting comfort and practical benefits of new technologies implemented in hearing aids. Though many people had access to the internet, I was surprised at the lack of knowledge about hearing health.
I started thinking of ways to grow awareness about hearing loss and the negative effects of untreated hearing loss. Going online with a blog was the simplest way to reach millions across the country. There has been no change in my mission and focus.
How has being the force behind EarGuru changed you as a person?
Being the sole founder of EarGuru has widened my perspective; in the past, my focus was to grow business for my company. Now it is to reach and educate more people through my blog. As an individual, EarGuru has made me calm and patient with a long term vision.
What has been the highlight of your career so far? A time when you’ve felt the proudest?
As a founder, I have always maintained a low profile. Recently, I met a very senior audiologist who inquired as to what I was doing of late, when I told him about EarGuru, he burst out “Oh! I always read the blogs, so it’s your website, great!” Being acknowledged by someone I have always admired was a proud moment.
For all those budding audiology bloggers out there, what would be your advice?
Sadly, India does not have many audiology bloggers; I wish experienced people would contribute with guest blogs to educate the masses. Every health blog should compulsorily cover audiology besides other lifestyle ailments.
How would you inspire confidence and inspire those people who have a loved one with hearing loss and perhaps find it difficult to relate or support?
Counselling the patient and the family members is the most important part of the hearing aid fitting. A good counselling session improves acceptability and the fitting success rate.
Could you describe how you’ve found the world of audiology so far? What excites you most about the future of this industry?
It’s a very exciting field, with advances in research and technology, we read about new developments on a daily basis. Having seen the era of analogue hearing aids, in my opinion, digital electronics is the best thing that ever happened to hearing aids.
It has made hearing aids comfortable and more acceptable for the user. With a breakthrough in stem cell technology and the discovery of new drug molecules, there is plenty of excitement ahead.
What has been the most challenging moment in your career?
Leaving a promising job to start a blog was a challenging moment. I discussed my idea with start-up mentors and business acquaintances; nobody seemed excited about an Indian audiology blog. All the same, the idea appealed to me and I went ahead with my gut feeling and put in my papers.
What are your future plans for Ear Guru? Any new projects in the pipeline?
The focus will always be to increase the penetration and reach the interiors of this vast country. India has many spoken and written languages. I have already started a Hindi (National Language) version besides English which is growing in double figures. My aim is to have blogs in as many Indian languages as possible.
Amrik Arora - The Ear Health Blogger & Founder of EarGuru
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