Lend Me Your Ears; a[euro]Happy Is the Hearing Man; Unhappy the Speaking Man.a[euro] - Ralph Waldo Emerson (18031882), US Essayist, Philosopher Intellect Essays (1841)
Byline: Dr. Jose Pujalte Jr.
I RAN recently into ENT specialist Dr. Christopher Malorre E. Calaquian who asked me to write about PNEI or the Philippine National Ear Institute in UPPhilippine General Hospital. Maloy sent a monograph and I apologize if I've taken the liberty of truncating his masterpiece.
When Republic Act 9245, otherwise known as "the Philippine Ear Research Institute Act of 2003," was authored by Senator Loren Legarda and later signed by Congress, the PNEI was born. This Institute is guided by its vision that "No Filipino shall be deprived of a functioning sense of hearing and balance," and it is focused on its mission of "providing for an ideal environment for comprehensive and integrated studies on hearing, balance and communication disorders relevant to Philippine conditions in support of the research and development mission of the University of the Philippines Manila through the National Institutes of Health."
History. From its simple beginnings as the "Ear Unit" of the University of the Philippines College of Medicine (UPCM) -- Philippine General Hospital (PGH), Dr. Generoso T. Abes, together with Dr. Joselito C. Jamir of the Department of Otorhinolaryngology of PGH, made into realization the "Philippine National Ear Institute." Envisioned to be an influential agency for national health policy formulation in hearing and balance health, the PNEI does not only provide services to the Filipino people in the form of hearing screening tests, other ear diagnostic tests, and ear treatment and rehabilitation, but also opens the gateway for researches, regarding the ear and its related fields, and for the education and prevention of common ear diseases, that would be vital to policy making regarding ear and hearing care. It will be the umbrella institute guiding all other organizations, whether government or private, to concert their efforts to one direction and one goal.
Services. PNEI boasts of its modern diagnostic equipments. Its Ear Unit is one of the most comprehensive diagnostic centers for hearing loss in all age groups - infants to elderly patients. Some of its diagnostic tests include Auditory Brainstem Response (ABR) Testing, Cortical Evoked Response (or late auditory response), Distortion Product Otoacoustic Emissions (DPOAE) Testing, Hearing instrument analysis (or text box measurements), Real ear insertion response (or Probe Mic adjustments of hearing aid), Behavioral Observation Audiometry (for 0-6 month old children), Visual Reinforcement Orientation Audiometry (for 6 months to 3 year olds), Play Audiometry (for older children), Pure Tone Audiometry (PTA) & Speech Audiometry, Tympanometry, Stapedial Reflex testing, Video nystagmography, Auditory Steady State Response, and several objective tests for non-organic hearing loss. …