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Siemens to Donate Hearing Instruments Through Second Annual Partnership With Quota International
Date:3/18/2009

Program gives the gift of sound to children in need

PISCATAWAY, N.J., March 18 /PRNewswire/ -- Siemens Hearing Instruments, Inc., one of the largest manufacturers of hearing instruments in the world, has renewed its partnership with Quota International to provide free hearing instruments to disadvantaged children.

Through its second annual partnership with Quota International's Sound Beginnings Program, Siemens will donate 100 free hearing instruments to children 17 and under who are in financial need and meet criteria set by Quota. Today, only eleven states in the nation mandate partial insurance coverage for pediatric hearing instruments, making it all the more difficult for some families to afford this out-of-pocket expense. The Siemens vouchers for families accepted into the program allow for the donation of a total of 50 CIELO(R) 2 and 50 Siemens Explorer(TM) hearing instruments.

"We are proud to once again partner with Siemens Hearing Instruments to help families avoid making the decision between the basics of life and hearing instruments for their children," said Deputy Executive Director Nancy Fitzpatrick at Quota. "Our partnership allows those families to provide some of the best hearing instruments available to their children, greatly enriching their quality of life."

One young recipient of the Sound Beginnings program, a girl named Lydia, has finally been connected to the sounds around her. Lydia was adopted from China by a couple in the U.S., who discovered that her previously noted behavioral problems were actually attributed to an undiagnosed hearing loss. Her new family applied for and was accepted into the Sound Beginnings program, opening a world of possibilities for little Lydia.

"Untreated, hearing loss can significantly impact a child's development and communication skills," said Dr. Thomas A. Powers, PhD., Vice President of Audiology and Compliance at Siemens Hearing Instruments, Inc. "17 out of every 1,000 children born in the U.S. suffer from some degree of hearing loss and the number rises as the child population ages. There is a critical need in this country for hearing loss education and meaningful hearing solutions, particularly among children in disadvantaged families. All of us at Siemens are grateful to be able to again partner with Quota to provide quality hearing solutions for the children who need them most."

Siemens Hearing Instruments is committed to helping hearing instrument wearers feel better - about themselves and their lives - with hearing instruments. One way the company has done that is through hearing loss awareness programs, such as Siemens strong alliance with The Walt Disney Company. Another way is by incorporating lifestyle with technology in the development of hearing instruments that can be fitted not only for a patient's ears, but for the person between them. This philosophy has proven to be both consumer-friendly and successful, for one out of every three hearing instruments worn in the world today is made by Siemens.

"Two great products are available for our program with Quota," Dr. Powers said. "CIELO 2 is a versatile hearing solution, offering a variety of styles for different degrees of hearing loss. Siemens Explorer has the capability, via our optional Tek enhancement systems, to wirelessly stream quality audio from cell phones, MP3 players, TVs, and other devices directly to both hearing instruments using Bluetooth(R) technology. No two sets of ears are alike, and varying degrees of hearing loss may require more than one type of technology. We want a child's first experiences with hearing instruments to be pleasant and enjoyable."

Siemens' hearing loss awareness website can be found at www.hearitforthefirsttime.org. More information appears on the main website, www.usa.siemens.com/hearing.

About Siemens Healthcare

The Siemens Healthcare Sector is one of the world's largest suppliers to the healthcare industry. The company is a renowned medical solutions provider with core competence and innovative strength in diagnostic and therapeutic technologies as well as in knowledge engineering, including information technology and system integration. With its laboratory diagnostics acquisitions, Siemens Healthcare is the first integrated healthcare company, bringing together imaging and lab diagnostics, therapy, and healthcare information technology solutions, supplemented by consulting and support services. Siemens Healthcare delivers solutions across the entire continuum of care - from prevention and early detection, to diagnosis, therapy and care. Additionally, Siemens Healthcare is the global market leader in innovative hearing instruments. The company employs around 49,000 people worldwide and operates in 130 countries. In the fiscal year 2008 (Sept. 30), Siemens Healthcare reported sales of euro 11.2 billion, orders of euro 11.8 billion, and Sector profit of euro 1.2 billion. Further information can be found by visiting http://www.siemens.com/healthcare.

About Quota International

Quota International, Inc., is a 90-year old international service organization that links members of all ages, occupations and nationalities in a worldwide network of service and friendship. Quota's 6,500 individual members in 285 Quota clubs in 14 countries across the world are committed to serving their communities and their world. With a motto of "we share," Quotarians are known especially for their service to deaf, hard-of-hearing, and speech-impaired individuals and disadvantaged women and children. Serving others, developing friendships and promoting international understanding are values shared by all Quota members. Further information can be found by visiting www.quota.org and www.wesharefoundation.org.


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SOURCE Siemens Hearing Instruments, Inc.
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