He believes that the security risk to current technologies used for cochlear implants and hearing aids, such as the use of Bluetooth streaming from smart phones to adjust settings, is limited. “I don’t think there is significant concern about individuals desiring to randomly access settings of a patient’s implant or hearing aid,” he said.
For Dr. Lee, the advances in technology for otolaryngology devices are only a “big plus,” from both the patient and provider standpoints. “Having a smart phone and being able to adjust your hearing on your smart phone is a huge plus for patients and something they appreciate and find very valuable,” he said.
Any medical device that can be connected through wired or wireless means to an external device, typically for the purpose of changing control settings, can conceivably be hacked. —Stephen L. Grimes, Strategic Healthcare Technology Associates