Had a quick hearing test with the CI audiologist today. She was making her trip through Wyoming to meet with clients for mappings and such, and agreed to do a quick hearing test with me. Originally I was to go to Cheyenne tomorrow, but then I found out she was coming HERE the day before. So I went to the special education services building and was directed to the audiology office. The school audiologist is excited that I'm working on getting the implant. He made a copy of my Medicare and Medicaid cards for the CI audiologist since she wanted to take the copy back to her office to add to my file. The CI audie and I went into the soundbooth. Took her a few minutes to get her laptop up and running. She pulled up a program and we got started. It was just a quick test, not a full-out test with beeps and tones. Just sentences. And these were difficult sentences, oh my goodness! And there were different voices being used too (male and female). I understood the female voices better than the male's for the most part. I got maybe 2 full sentences right on, but all the rest were a bunch of mumble-mumble-WORD-mumble blah blah blah blah what?
One sentence said something about personal touch like "I'm going to add some personal touch" or something like that. I could've swore it said "principal punch." Anyway, we did 2 different rounds of sentences. First round, I got 7%, second round, 21%. Well, I definitely meet Medicare's criteria for cochlear implant coverage! CI Audie and I talked some more, trying to work out a plan of some sorts. We're going to shoot for a March/April surgery date for the cochlear implant. I'd rather do it sooner, but I'd have to travel to Denver, and with the holidays and winter coming up, I decided it'd be better to wait until early Spring.
When the audie gets back to Denver, she'll speak with the surgeon and see if we can schedule the initial visit with the surgeon and the pre-op into one appointment, so I wouldn't have to make two separate trips. She also mentioned she was planning to come back here sometime in April, so if we could do the surgery in March, then I could see the audie when she comes here for activation. It would be great if this happened, but we'll see what happens.
My Medicare coverage starts up next month, and they will cover 80% of the implant, and Wyoming Medicaid will cover the remaining 20%. Late last week, the audie had heard that Medicaid wasn't covering implants for adults anymore, but that applies to Colorado. Wyoming Medicaid is still covering them (I confirmed this via email with someone from Wyoming Medicaid's office on Monday and got the update "covered services" manual as well). Seems like everything's all falling into place for me, finally. I've been working at this for years, since I was in high school. I'm glad I can finally progress with the implant. I'm still going to do the left ear alone, and I'm definitely choosing Advanced Bionic's device as well. Hopefully by spring next year the new Neptune processor will be available. Audie told me I should be able to get 2 processors, so if that's the case, I'd like to have the Harmony for everyday general use, and the Neptune for back up and for being in wet situations (I do have some very young nephews who do like to splash and squirt water guns).
Audie told me I should be hearing from someone from the CI Center's office within the next few days or so, to get things more set in stone/planned out basically.
And now for hearing aid stuff... I see my hearing aid audie later this afternoon to have a new earmold made for the right ear. I don't think the current earmold fits as well anymore. Been more than a year, so it's about time for a new one anyway. Should be fun! Two different audiologists in one day.