03 March 2023
World Hearing Day 2023
The NCHA invites you to celebrate World Hearing Day with us as we raise awareness of unsupported hearing loss and the major opportunities to tackle this growing public health challenge together.
This year, we support the World Health Organization (WHO) message of ear and hearing care for all. In the UK, improving access to ear and hearing care means ensuring that people have timely access to an audiologist in primary care. This means audiologists, like GPs, dentists, pharmacists, and opticians, become the first point of contact.
There are 12 million adults in the UK living with hearing loss, representing 1 in 5, and this is set to grow to more than 14 million by 2035. Hearing loss affects our ability to communicate, resulting in an increased risk of:
- Social isolation and loneliness
- Cognitive decline
- Reduced quality of life
- Other mental health issues
The good news is that early diagnosis and support significantly improves quality of life and reduces risk. The NCHA believes we must all focus on enabling early diagnosis and support to help people to live healthier, and more independently, for longer.
This year the NHS in England has prioritised improving access to audiology services for all adults, recognising that GPs are under pressure and do not need to be involved in the vast majority of these care pathways. It has, therefore, committed to improving equality of access by allowing more NHS patients to self-refer to audiology. This is a significant move towards equality in access, and a step closer to better ear and hearing care for all. The NCHA fully supports NHS England in its goal.
Emily McCabe, NCHA Hearing Health Policy Officer, said: 'The NCHA is an advocate for primary care audiology for all across the UK, as this will help early diagnosis and ongoing support for ear and hearing health problems.'
Join us in celebrating World Hearing Day and email [email protected] to support ear and hearing care for all.