Christine Winther

Clinic manager
Improving the life quality for people. That seems to be a theme when talking to Clinic manager Christine Winther. She works on that every day by supporting the ones completely fundamental for the research: the test subjects.

April 2019

What is your primary work area at Eriksholm Research Centre?

"I have the main responsibility for running our clinic and making sure that our test subjects are always ready to participate in test work.
I do audiometry, adjustments, and overall rehabilitation. Besides that, I recruit new test subjects, maintain the database, and do the daily operations in the clinic such as ordering products, coordinating appointments, and a lot more.

Information to the test subjects is a big part of my job. Many people don’t know what it means to be a hearing aid user and how demanding it can be. When you get new glasses, you usually see clearly as soon as you put them on, but with hearing aids you need to train your brain to hear again."

What made you interested in the hearing care field in the first place?

"In the beginning, it wasn’t the hearing or the hearing aids that motivated me – it was human interaction. I always knew that I wanted to work with people, but being a doctor or a psychologist wasn’t the right path for me. When I read about audiology, I knew that this would be a perfect role for me."

How and why did you end up working at Eriksholm?

"After graduating as an audiologist, I started working in a private hearing clinic. When the job vacancy at Eriksholm came up, I knew that this job was a unique opportunity in my field. At Eriksholm the clinician is part of the whole process with the hearing aid users: the audiometry, adjusting, and the following rehabilitation. I really get to know the test subjects while being really close to the developments in the field, and I’m able to apply newest knowledge to my practice."

What is experiences are especially insteresting for you?

"Many of my interesting experiences happens when I am with the test subjects, and we succeed in doing a really good hearing aid fitting or a really good mould, and you can see the happiness in their eyes. It is always motivating when they tell me how much it means for them to come here and to be so involved.
The test subjects typically really care about making a difference, and they are very engaged and grateful to be part of the research. Some of them even ask us, when they haven’t been in a test for some time, if they can be moved a bit up the list.

Really getting to know the people we help, who also helps us, really gives some great experiences. As an example, I had a test subject who didn’t want a mould because for him it symbolised old age. I talked him into trying it, and when he came back the next week he told me that even the neighbors had realized that his hearing was better. They joked that they should be more careful about what they said in the garden, because now he could hear it."

How does the close connection to the research make a difference for your job?

"It is an advantage in my work with test subjects that I am always one step ahead, because I know what is being developed and researched on. Knowing for sure that things are happening in the longer run also motivates me to stay in this field for a long time, because I know that we will keep making something nicer and better in the future, which will give even more life quality to the people we work with."

What do you do in your spare time, when you’re not working at Eriksholm?

"I spend most of my spare time seeing friends and family. I also really enjoy reading, sewing, and being creative.
Interior design and do-it-yourself projects at home is definitely a hobby of mine. For instance, my boyfriend and I just re-decorated our apartment completely. I really enjoy using my hands, which may be part of the reason my work fits me so well: I have to work meticulously with a lot of small things and find out how to get the best result."

What are the three most important values in your life and why?

"I am very earth-bound and I think that is reflected in my values.

Being sincere: It is not always possible to be friendly or honest, but you can always be sincere.

Humour: Humour makes many things easier. Working with people with a hearing impairment can sometimes be difficult. Many things get harder as you get older, and the elderly is the age group we typically work with. But a smile can sometimes help getting the best out of the situation, and I like finding something positive or humorous in a difficult situation.

Creativity: Creativity gives me energy. Since I was a child, it has been important for me to just sit with a coloring book immersed in my own thoughts. I think the best when I am doing something creative with my hands at the same time."

What is the most exciting scientific breakthrough or invention in your time?

"I think the development in artificial intelligence seems to change things both on a big and a smaller scale. It is very interesting to see what the development in that area will bring.
At the same time, many small-scale, down-to-earth inventions also catch my attention. For instance, I read about a dad who invented a carrier sling, which helped his paralysed daughter experience what it is like to walk. It may not be a breakthrough, but it meant something for her life quality."

What do you hope will happen in future science?

"To me the most important thing is that the discoveries and break-throughs we do makes the world better and create better life quality in many different aspects. That accounts for both people with hearing impairment, but also many other challenges like green energy, preparing our planet for the next generations, health, new means of transportation, or making sure endangered animals won’t get wiped out. My hope for the future is that we can all stay here in a good and decent way."

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