(The Daily Dish) Relay Utah is a state program managed by the Public Service Commission that was created to help provide the hard of hearing, and deaf, in our state with hearing assistive phones and technology for cell phones to help them communicate and regain their independence.

Utah is home to more than 600,000 individuals that are hard of hearing or deaf. That’s about 1 in 10 people who have some level of hearing loss. One thing we don’t think about with hearing loss is the isolation from friends, and family and loss of independence of calling to make a dinner reservation, doctor appointment, or order a pizza. Relay Utah provides hearing assistive phones to help the hard of hearing communicate and regain this independence and connection.

One of their newest phones is an amplified phone that is the first of its kind that is able to slow down live speech. Another feature of the amplified phones is that they don’t just make things louder. Louder isn’t always the problem. They have tone control that allows you to adjust how the caller’s tone of voice sounds. Example a Female vs. a Male. You can easily adjust the high tones and low tones making it easier to understand the caller.

It also has a flasher so you can see and hear the phone ring, it offers a loud and clear speakerphone, and a large high-contrast keypad that is easy to see and press. Also popular has been our cell phone amplifier. It connects via Bluetooth and you can use the amplifier to help with volume and tone control.

Relay Utah is a free service. Hearing assistive phones are provided to any hard of hearing or deaf Utahn whose income qualifies. Most people who already qualify for public assistance programs are eligible. All the qualification information is on their website. It’s important to know that Relay Utah doesn’t sell any products or services. If your income doesn’t qualify to receive a phone, Relay can provide you with information on possible options for obtaining a phone.

They’ve been helping people with hearing loss reconnect with family and friends for 30 years. They hope you’ll go to their website to find information to help you with tips and resources to ease communicating with their hard-of-hearing mom, dad, sister, or friend.

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