Humanitarian audiology in Nicaragua: a quality of life study


Author/Creator ORCID




Towson University. Department of Audiology, Speech-Language Pathology and Deaf Studies


Citation of Original Publication




Access to healthcare in third world countries is a challenge that is often addressed through medical mission trips (MMTs). When utilizing MMTs to fill a void in healthcare services, it is important to ensure that the patients receiving services on these mission trips perceive the benefits that are intended by the program (Suchdev et al., 2007). This study examined the impact of the services provided by Mayflower Medical Outreach (MMO) MMT program, an organization that provides hearing healthcare to residents in Jinotega, Nicaragua . A seven-question survey was administered to 53 participants. The survey asked questions to obtain information regarding the patients’ perception of the hearing aids and services provided by MMO. The surveys were administered to both pediatric and adult patients by MMO volunteers and audiologists . Results of the survey responses revealed a very positive perception of the services provided by the organization. Overall, the majority of the patients reported that the hearing aids provided by the organization are easy to use and promote a change in quality of life. Additionally, positive responses were reported regarding the overall benefit and satisfaction from using the hearing aids and that patients would recommend hearing aids to their friends and family. The most variable response was the question requesting information about the comfort of the hearing aids . The results of this study indicate that MMO has an overall positive impact on the patients they serve in Jinotega, Nicaragua. Additionally, the survey responses collected from this study support the need for mission trips to underserved populations in third world countries.