The following is a letter from our CEO, Dr. Rick Kopke, to all our partners and friends:

As part of our humanitarian initiatives at HEI, I was able to travel to Hanoi, Vietnam and partner with the National ENT Hospital (TNEH) to serve the Vietnamese people. Because of this trip, I am excited to announce that Hough Ear Institute has signed a five-year Memorandum of Understanding with the hospital. What does that mean, exactly? This is an

agreement that allows HEI to be a part of training physicians, teaching about audiology and speech therapy, and investing in the hospital’s equipment needs. The ultimate goal of this partnership is assisting the hospital with the creation of a self-sustaining cochlear implant program. So why do they need help?

Today, there are over 50,000 children in the Northern Vietnam that need a cochlear implant.

Currently, the only way to help these kids is to fly in a cochlear implant specialist from another country to assist in the operations. Together, we can do better.

At HEI we dream big, and this opportunity is no different. We envision the men, women, and children of Vietnam receiving the proper treatment they need to have their hearing restored, AND have a best-in-class, self-sustaining program of their own. The advantages of this program to patients, and the economic impact to the people of Hanoi and greater Vietnam are enormous.

Our investment starts now. We’ve already begun putting things in place to further help the doctors in Hanoi thanks to technologies like Skype. The hospital is also very interested in sending more fellows to study at HEI. The former HEI fellows I reconnected with during my trip are thriving – and we are excited to welcome more of their colleagues. My hope is to be traveling back within a year to bring more help and training to the doctors, the nurses, and the people of Hanoi.

I believe HEI has the potential to continue having a long-term and positive influence in Hanoi. I am so very thankful, encouraged, and thrilled regarding the current and future humanitarian and teaching efforts like these. My hope is that as you learn of the impact HEI is having around the world you will continued to be inspired. And as always, if you’d like to donate to our research or directly to the humanitarian efforts like these, we’d love to talk with you more. I look forward to your continued partnership as we work together to restore hearing worldwide.