Janelle Balkwill (left) is excited and inspired to follow in Dr. Chen’s footsteps at Okanagan Hearing Centre, which offers the full scope of audiology – diagnostic testing, custom hearing protection, hearing aids, and more.

Janelle Balkwill (left) is excited and inspired to follow in Dr. Chen’s footsteps at Okanagan Hearing Centre, which offers the full scope of audiology – diagnostic testing, custom hearing protection, hearing aids, and more.

Open house for Dr. Joyce Chen marks change – and continuity – at Okanagan Hearing Centre

Audiologist Janelle Balkwill shares Dr. Chen’s approach to care

Dr. Joyce Chen’s patients from Okanagan Hearing Centre will have an opportunity to wish her a happy retirement at an open house Oct. 3.

And they’ll have a chance to meet Janelle Balkwill, who is excited and inspired to follow in Dr. Chen’s footsteps.

“She is just amazing and she has such an awesome reputation,” Balkwill said.

“She’s created a really awesome atmosphere at Okanagan Hearing. She’s always provided compassionate and caring service, and she has great relationships with her patients. And that’s my goal too,” she said.

It’s important for patients to trust their practitioners, and Balkwill – like Dr. Chen – understands that patients are looking for proper care. If patients come away feeling like they’ve just visited a hearing aid store, they haven’t been properly cared for.

Okanagan Hearing Centre offers the full scope of audiology – diagnostic testing, custom hearing protection, hearing aids, and more. And Balkwill is also one of only two or three audiologists in the Okanagan who are trained to offer Tinnitus Retraining Therapy (TRT), a technique to manage the effects of persistent ringing in the ears.

“A lot of patients are told, even by their doctors, that nothing can be done about their tinnitus,” she said. “But TRT has been available for 30 years, and there’s evidence-based outcomes showing that people really benefit from it.”

Most important, Balkwill says, is knowing all of her patients well enough to offer them the right care.

“It’s nice to have relationships with the patients and really care about their hearing,” she said. “We meet their families and talk about their grandkids. We even get to know the names of their dogs!”

Balkwill has already met many of Dr. Chen’s patients, and she’s excited to meet more at Thursday’s “Ode to Joyce” open house at the Okanagan Hearing Centre from 1 to 3 p.m.

“I know a lot of people want to congratulate Joyce on all her years of service. We’ll have some refreshments and snacks, and all her patients can come in and say goodbye to her, and then meet me if they haven’t already.”

Because she shares Dr. Chen’s attitude and approach to patient care, Balkwill is absolutely confident she will love her new role.

“She’s an amazing person and yes, I’ve got some big shoes to fill,” she says.

“But I’m happy to take that on.”

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Learn more about Okanagan Hearing Centre at okanaganhearing.com or call 778-484-7237.