Search the Site

News and views

Stay informed

Home / News and views
News > News Article

02 June 2023

NCHA member update – 2 June

This week:

Hearing-aid sales continue to grow

The latest data from the British Irish Hearing Instrument Manufacturers Association (BIHIMA) shows continued growth in UK hearing-aid sales, including the following:  

  • Sales have grown by 1.4% year on year and 12.4% compared with fourth-quarter results last year 
  • The NHS market size is up 19.1% year on year and 15% versus the fourth quarter of 2022.

BHIMA said that hearing-aid sales had reached their highest peak in four years.

Grant awarded to develop hearing aids with medical monitoring

Bristol-based company EarSwitch has won the UK Research and Innovation's Healthy Ageing Challenge grant competition. It will use the grant to integrate its in-ear sensor technology into hearing aids that provide information about blood oxygen levels, continuous blood pressure, heart rhythms and temperature readings. 

EarSwitch technology monitors the movement of the tensor tympani, one of the smallest muscles in the body. It can unlock information about eye movement and provide information about other health conditions.

Emily McCabe, an audiologist at the NCHA, said: "Given the high prevalence of hearing loss in our ageing population, and the benefits hearing aids bring, there are major population health benefits if we can develop and integrate monitoring technologies for fall detection, heart health and general health into hearing aids. We could empower millions to stay well and live independently for longer. This is the latest in a series of developments in this area." 

Read the complete article

Music to your ears

Listening to music through hearing aids is not always optimal as they are designed primarily for speech understanding. Recent research has provided valuable insights into programming hearing aids for music, but gaps in clinical knowledge remain.

What are the best musical instruments to play if you have a hearing loss? Is multi-channel compression a good idea for a music program? Can we derive a musical preference index like the SII (speech intelligibility index) for speech? Should a music program have a more linear response since streamed music has already been compression-limited during its creation? 

Marshall Chasin, AuD, director of auditory research research at the Musicians' Clinics of Canada and author of the book Music and Hearing Aids, addresses these questions in an interview with The Hearing Review.

Other sector news

HCPC launches corporate plan  

The Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) has published its corporate plan for 2023-2024, listing three main themes for 'protecting the public':

  • Improving the experience of registrants and others who engage with the HCPC 
  • Contributing to sector-wide workforce planning and resilience
  • Driving forward efficiencies and innovation in how it works.

National audiology data collection

NHS England is asking NHS and independent audiology providers to complete a questionnaire about their services as part of its National Physiological Science Transformation Programme. Learn more. 

Health policy updates

Primary care recovery plan

The Government published its primary care recovery plan this month, focusing on relieving pressures on general practices.

explains that, from September this year, more people will be able to self-refer for specific conditions, notably audiology for older people, including hearing-aid provision.


NHS England is expanding its drive to recruit healthcare professionals from overseas by increasing funding for allied health professionals. Read more. 

The move comes amid new delays to the Government's long-awaited NHS workforce plan. In an interview with The Guardian, health secretary Steve Barclay declined to provide a deadline for publication.






Share this page
For more information please contact:

Press enquiries

Media enquiries should be directed to [email protected] or call 020 7298 5110.

We are happy to put you in touch with our expert policy advisers who can comment on a variety of issues.

You can also follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn.