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18 April 2005

Campus TV Reports from Santiago de Chile

New programme for April/May 2005 reports on the seminar conducted in the South American metropolis by Professor Sebastian Hoth of the Ear, Nose and Throat Hospital of the University of Heidelberg—Course organised jointly by the Heidelberg Center in Santiago and the Universidad de Chile describes implantation of hearing aids for deaf babies

In the last few years, the University of Heidelberg has considerably enhanced its international standing. One example is Chile. The Heidelberg Center in the capital, Santiago de Chile, has begun its work and scholars and scientists from Heidelberg visit Chile on a regular basis to report on their latest research findings or to hold seminars and lectures.

The latest instance of such cooperation is a seminar on hearing deficiencies and deafness in new-born babies by Professor Sebastian Hoth of the Ear, Nose and Throat Hospital of the University of Heidelberg. Campus TV accompanied Professor Hoth to Santiago and reports on the prospects for the implantation of hearing aids in very young infants. In RNF-PLUS on Rhine-Neckar Television, broadcast via the Astra satellite and in the cable networks of the Rhine-Neckar Triangle, Campus TV will also be reporting on the latest news from the universities of the region, starting Thursday, 21 April 2005.

Recognising early hearing disorders

Congenital hearing defects can lead to serious auditory, linguistic, cognitive, intellectual, emotional and psychosocial deficits. Prevention of this kind of damage is only possible if the disorder is recognised and treated at an early stage. In this connection the word "early" has to be taken very literally. If a child is unable to process acoustic stimuli in the first few months of life, this will seriously impair the organic and functional maturation of the auditory system or prevent it altogether. Language acquisition will then be irretrievably thwarted.

In the last few years, progress in the achievement of objective testing methods for hearing ability has been considerable. This means that it is now possible to test a baby's hearing almost immediately after birth. Reliability is high and the methods themselves do not require excessive time or effort. The procedures involved are based on acoustic and electrical stimulus responses identifiable via suitable sensors. They provide reliable information on the functioning of the hearing system.

Against this background the Escuela de Tecnologia Médica of the Faculdad de Medicina at the Universidad de Chile and the Heidelberg Latin America Center in Santiago have joined forces to organise a seminar on the subject of Detección precoz de sordera en neonatos y niños—problemas e intervenciones (Early Recognition of Hearing Disorders in Babies and Children—Problems and Interventions). Information on the various aspects involved in the identification of infant hearing disorders has been prepared by experts from diverse Chilean institutions in collaboration with two speakers from Germany (Prof. Sebastian Hoth, Heidelberg, and Dr. Katrin Neumann, University of Frankfurt/Main).

Introducing hearing screening for babies in Chile

The topical incentive for the seminar, which follows on from various other events of a similar kind, is the large-scale plan to introduce hearing screening methods for new-born babies in Chile. This project is an ambitious scheme indeed, given the fact that even in Germany it has only so far been implemented in the framework of regional programmes. The seminar itself (most notably the reports on ongoing national pilot projects) has indicated the determination of all involved to overcome the obstacles to be anticipated.

Mysterious curse tablets

We are all prone to superstition. There is hardly anyone who does not avoid black cats or has not shaken hands with a chimney-sweep in the belief that this will bring luck. Putting a curse on someone is also a form of superstition. In antiquity there was even an institutionalised format for doing this properly, the so-called curse tablets. Professor Kai Brodersen and Amina Kropp of the University of Mannheim have been looking into this phenomenon.

Preparations for a concert tour

A dream project at Mannheim's Conservatory of Music is well on the way to coming true. The student orchestra will soon be flying to New York to perform at the world-famous Carnegie Hall. The tour has been made possible by the "Seoul Meets Mannheim" project, a collaborative enterprise between Mannheim and the Korean Chamber Orchestra of Seoul National University, South Korea. The flight to New York has been preceded by a number of small-scale concerts and above all some very thorough rehearsals. Campus TV was on the spot to report.

New avenues for Mannheim's University of Applied Sciences

Mannheim's University of Applied Sciences has been hitting the headlines recently, not least as the result of the merger with Mannheim's University of Social Studies and the exploration of new research fields. Another change is the name of the University. The original, rather cumbersome name—Mannheim University of Applied Sciences, University of Engineering Education and Design—has been simplified to Mannheim University of Applied Sciences. Reason enough for an interview with Rector Professor Dietmar von Hoyningen-Huene.

Broadcasting times: from Thursday, 21 April 2005 every week on Thursdays at 6.30 p.m. Fridays at 7.30 p.m. and Saturdays 7.30 p.m. and midnight.

The sponsors of Campus TV are the non-profit Klaus Tschira Foundation in Heidelberg, the Mannheim lubricant company Fuchs Petrolub AG, the John Deere AG and the Baden-Württemberg Broadcast Authority (LfK) Stuttgart. The programme is compered by Campus TV editor Joachim Kaiser.

Please address any inquiries to
Dr. Michael Schwarz
Press Officer of the University of Heidelberg
phone: 06221/542310, fax: 54317

on the ENT section:
Prof. Dr. Sebastian Hoth
Im Neuenheimer Feld 400
D-69120 Heidelberg
phone: 06221/5636798, fax: 564641

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