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09 December 2022

NCHA member update – 9 December

This week:

RNID launches campaign on ear care access

The RNID has said that 73% of respondents with earwax report hearing loss, 50% experience earache or discomfort, 37% report tinnitus and 25% experience dizziness.

The RNID has launched a new campaign to improve access to ear care for impacted earwax.
Its research found people often found it challenging to access NHS-funded care, including a lack of locally commissioned services and long waits, which meant more people were seeking this care privately.

The RNID also found that 26% of survey respondents could not afford the average cost of £50 to £100 to remove impacted earwax.

The charity says more than 2.3 million people in the UK need help with earwax each year and the NHS needs to fund more primary care capacity to meet this need.

Emily McCabe, NCHA hearing health policy officer, said: "The NCHA fully supports the need for the NHS to fund equitable access to primary care audiology, including earwax management. Our colleagues in ENT are under pressure, as too are GP partners in primary care. The NHS should commission a primary care audiology service to provide this essential care based on clinical need."

Competition watchdogs raise concerns about cochlear implants

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has raised concerns that Cochlear's proposed acquisition of Oticon Medical could adversely impact investment in innovation and prices of cochlear implants due to reduced competition.
In the UK, the CMA said the merger of two leading implant providers could result in "higher prices for the NHS, and reduced quality and slower innovation for UK patients who rely on these life-changing devices". Read the CMA's concerns.

World Hearing Day planning webinar

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has had to reschedule the webinars on World Hearing Day 2023 planned for 7 December, as shared in our 18 November update.
Instead, they will take place on 12 January. Register for morning or afternoon session on 12 January. Start times are in Zurich's time zone, not GMT.

NCHA consultation roundup

The NCHA has responded to the BAA and BSHAA consultation on onward referral guidance for audiology. Read our response.
We are now finalising our response to the HCPC consultations on registrant fees and preceptorships. If you would like to participate, please email [email protected].

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