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Assistive Technology

FCC Issues Final Rules for Closed Captioning

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has issued final rules in accordance with Section 713 of the Communications Act to enhance the quality of closed captioning.  Despite previous rules, the FCC has continually received comments noting that captions are often found to be “inaccurate, garbled, incomplete, misspelled and/or misunderstood, incomprehensible, obscure the speaker, or significantly lag behind the spoken words they are intended to convey.”  The final rules require that captions are accurate and synchronous in portraying the spoken words and background noises, are present for

Wireless RERC CSUN14 Presentations Now Online

Wireless RERC researchers were featured at the 2014 International Technology & Persons with Disabilities Conference (CSUN) in San Diego, California March 17-22, 2014.  Links to presentations are below.

Open Letter to LA Senators Urges Support for Assistive Technology

March 2014 — Former New Orleans Saints player, Steve Gleason, issued an open letter to Louisiana Senators Mary Landrieu (D-LA) and David Vitter (R-LA) and other Louisiana Congress Members  urging them to consider supporting a recent bi-partisan piece of legislation, The Ensuring Access to Quality Complex Rehabilitation Technology Act [S.948 and H.R. 942].  The Act would amend Title XVIII of the Social Security Act to ensure that complex rehabilitation technology is covered under Medicare.

Funding Awarded to Refine Visually Guided Hearing Aid

March 2014 — The National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD) awarded the Boston University College of Health and Rehabilitation Services with a five-year,  $2.75 million grant for the testing and refinement of a Visually Guided Hearing Aid prototype (VGHA). Typical hearing aids work by amplifying all sound in an area.  However, in many cases there may be sounds an individual would like to ignore.

CVS Releases New “ScripTalk” Prescription Labels

March 2014 — CVS Pharmacy announced that customers can now receive ScripTalk talking prescription labels when ordering online at CVS.com.  ScripTalk is a free service which provides customers who are blind or have low vision with audible information about their prescription through the use of a ScripTalk reader provided by Envision America.  Of the new service Vice President of Programs and Policy at the American Federation of the Blind, Paul Schroeder, noted, “The lack of accessible labels on prescription drug containers puts people with vision loss at serious risk of medication mishaps.


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The Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center for Wireless Technologies is sponsored by the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services under grant number 90RE5007-01-00. The opinions contained in this website are those of the Wireless RERC and do not necessarily reflect those of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services or NIDILRR.