Hearing Solutions was opened in 2004 by Chris and Buddy Jewel, an audiologist and a hearing instrument specialist. In 2017, they retired and transitioned their practice to the care of Dr. Meg Cates. For Dr. Meg, it was the perfect fit. She and the Jewels had similar approaches and philosophies about treating hearing loss, and she could continue the same high standard of care that the Jewels' patients had come to expect.
Dr. Meg has been a practicing audiologist since 2011. She has always been a self-professed tech geek, with an enthusiasm for computer programming and problem solving, but she wanted a career with more human interaction than most tech fields would give her. In her first audiology class in university, she sat in front of an audiometer and was right at home — audiology lets her play with equipment and help people. For her, the field is a great marriage of technology with patient care, and she loves that she can effect change in the quality of people's lives.
Her love of research and technology benefits her patients, too. She takes a solutions-based approach to helping patients, looking for the outcomes each patient wants. Hearing aids aren't just about turning up the volume. Individual patients have individual needs, whether that's wanting to have quiet conversations with friends, cheer on a grandkid at a loud and crowded basketball game, or attend a loud concert. Dr. Meg always tries to get to the bottom of what her patients want, asking as many questions and trying as many new things as it takes to find the right fit. She's not afraid to dig into the programming side of the hearing aid and steer away from the default to follow someone's acoustic preferences and their needs.
Dr. Meg approaches sound problems differently than many of her peers. For example, she's collected live sound samples of the situations where people might actually use their hearing aids, such as restaurants, playgrounds, and sporting events. Testing out hearing aids in our office will only tell us so much about how well they will perform; the true test is how they work in the real world. Dr. Meg meets her patients halfway by simulating real-world situations with these recordings. When you come to our office, you can get a sense for how your new hearing aids will work for you in your everyday life, so we can program your hearing aids to best suit you.
Dr. Meg has practiced in four states (Arkansas, South Carolina, New Mexico, and Colorado) and worked with many different people. Her naturally curious mind has led her to take the best of what she's learned from each of them. Her practice at Hearing Solutions is a culmination of all of her experiences. She's taken the opportunity to study from as many people as possible, and she continues to study the field actively. Her husband jokes that if there was a degree after the doctorate of audiology, she would have gone for that too! She's a permanent student, and that means her patients are supported by someone who is always finding better and better ways to help solve hearing problems.
Dr. Meg has the following credentials:
Doctor of Audiology,, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, May 2011.
Speech Pathology, University of Arkansas at Little Rock, May 2007.
Spanish, University of Arkansas at Little Rock, May 2007.
Marion Downs Hearing Center, Denver, Colorado | July 2015 - October 2015.
Junior League of Albuquerque, Albuquerque, NM | July 2013 - July 2015.
1st place in Hearing Services, Albuquerque Journal Reader's Choice Award 2015, Worth Hearing Center.
Berkeley County Audiologist of the Year - 2012, 2013. Berkeley County Gazette.
Dangerous Decibels Certification - 2008. Oregon Health Science University.
T-35 NIH Traineeship - 2008, National Center for Rehabilitative Audiology Research. Portland, Oregon.
Cates, M. (2012). "May is Better Speech and Hearing Month". Health & Wellness Magazine. Charleston, SC.
Silverman S., Cates M., Saunders G. (2011). "Is Measured Hearing Aid Benefit Affected by Seeing Baseline Outcome Questionnaire Responses?" American Journal of Audiology, 20: 90-99.
Holland Doran (2013) "Audiology Students Soundproof the UAMS Sim Center" (Cates M., et al.) UAMS Health.
Nicholson N., Cates M., Irving R. (2009). "Showstoppers!" Hearing Health, Deafness Research Foundation.