In 1978 a multi channel cochlear implant was used to produce hearing sensations in a totally deaf adult for the first time in Australia. This event was a milestone for Prof.Graham Clark and his team of researchers at the University of Melbourne and the Victorian Ear and Eye Hospital. The implant produced hearing sensations by stimulating nerves inside the inner ear with electrical impulses.
The success of the first research trial led to commercial interest in the cochlear implant. By 1982 the first commercially produced multi channel implant the “Nucleaus 22 channel cochlear implant”- was ready for testing. By the end of 1984 enough adults had trialled the device in Melbourne with improvements in their communciation skills to allow the trial to extend to children. The first child was implanted in 1985.