The British Tinnitus Association has presented the prestigious industry award, the Marie & Jack Shapiro Prize to a collaborative team of tinnitus clinicians and researchers. Eldré Beukes, George Vlaescu, Vinaya Manchaiah, David Baguley, Peter Allen, Viktor Kaldo and Gerhard Anderson have been awarded the prize for their paper ‘Development and technical functionality of an Internet-based intervention for tinnitus in the UK.’
The prize and £250 cash was presented to Eldré Beukes and David Baguley by the Falklands War veteran, author and speaker Simon Weston CBE. The award took place at the BTA’s 24th Annual Conference in Sheffield on 7 September 2017, which was attended by audiologists, hearing professionals, researchers and BTA members.
The winning papers were chosen from a shortlist of 12. The judging panel was formed of the BTA’s Professional Advisers’ Committee. Psychological treatments such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy are a proven intervention for reducing tinnitus distress. The winning study aimed to develop an internet-based Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (iCBT) intervention for those experiencing tinnitus in the United Kingdom as well as to identify specific aspects of the iCBT that required improvement.
The judges considered that the paper: “presents a first exploration of internet based CBT to alleviate tinnitus, and demonstrates the feasibility and effectiveness of the approach. iCBT could enhance the availability of treatments for tinnitus sufferers, and reduce waiting times and pressure on services. With challenges to service provision, novel approaches such as this are critical”
Prizewinner Eldré Beukes, PhD student at Anglia Ruskin University said: “What a huge honour! Together with my co-authors, I am thrilled to be awarded this prestigious prize. Many thanks to the BTA for this privilege. It certainly inspires me to continue this work. Seeing the positive effect this research has had for those distressed by tinnitus has been very encouraging.”