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Informatics Branch

Overview

The Informatics Branch's primary objective is to ensure hearing loss and auditory injury patient data is captured and tracked within the Department of Defense, or DoD, and shared with the Department of Veterans Affairs, or VA. In line with this objective, the branch's secondary goal is to encourage and facilitate the analysis and use of such data for the purposes of research and education.

By establishing an information management framework to capture and centralize hearing loss, hearing impairment, and auditory system data, the branch seeks to establish reliable access to, and enable the sharing and re-use of, vital and valid health information. These processes will be carefully managed and monitored to preserve privacy through stringent security protocols. In accordance with its mission, the branch:

  • Develops the Joint Hearing and Auditory System Injury Registry, or JHASIR, in consultation with audiologists, otolaryngologists, and other DoD and VA specialists
  • Utilizes occurrence and outcome analysis tools, such as the DoD Occupational and Environmental Health Readiness System Hearing Conservation database, the existing trauma and traumatic brain injury registries, and the Joint Theater Trauma Registry, to support the development of improved strategies for preventing and treating hearing loss and auditory-vestibular injuries
  • Develops the means to integrate clinical audiograms with hearing conservation testing, demographic theater data, and other injury data, into a single format accessible to DoD and VA providers
  • Assists outlying facilities and first responders through the development of, or improved access to, critical information, such as baseline testing mechanisms and tele-medicine consultation and outcomes, which serve to inform lifecycle management from first contact to rehabilitation
  • Works to establish outreach guidance via tele-health resources, and
  • Creates interconnectivity between, and develops analysis reporting mechanisms for, other Center of Excellence registries to examine the relationship of hearing loss and auditory injury with comorbid impairments and with the management and rehabilitation of polytrauma

Goals and Objectives

  • Develop the JHASIR to provide the capability to analyze cohort incidence, prevalence, and longitudinal outcomes, assess intervention strategies, and enhance performance improvement
  • Develop a common user and provider interface across the DoD and VA to enhance data integrity, increase coding accuracy, and improve workflow processes for auditory-vestibular care
  • Ensure that treatment-critical data is available to manage injuries across the continuum of care, and
  • Explore efforts to include innovative tele-health programs that support clinical care, outreach, advocacy, surveillance, treatment, education, and research initiatives

About Us

The Hearing Center of Excellence fosters and promotes the prevention, diagnosis, mitigation, treatment, rehabilitation and research of hearing loss and auditory injury. It supports the development, exchange and adoption of best practices, research, measures of effectiveness and clinical care guidelines to reduce the prevalence and cost of hearing loss and tinnitus among Warriors and Veterans. Read more

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