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Research report

Still waiting to be heard... Report on the Inquiry into the Hearing Health and Wellbeing of Australia

13 Sep 2017
This report argues that hearing health must be treated as a national health priority, and provides recommendations to help achieve this.
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On 2 November 2016, the then Minister for Health, Aged Care and Sport, the Hon Sussan Ley MP, referred the Inquiry into the Hearing Health and Wellbeing of Australia (the Inquiry) to the Standing Committee on Health, Aged Care and Sport (the Committee).

As part of the Inquiry the Committee reviewed the current state of hearing health in Australia. More specifically the Committee examined:

  • The prevalence of hearing impairment in Australia and the costs that hearing impairment imposes both on individuals and on the broader Australian community.
  • The state of hearing health within at-risk population groups. In particular, the impacts of otitis media infections among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and specific issues relating to access to services and treatment for people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, people living in rural and regional areas, and older Australians.
  • Programs to encourage Australians, particularly young Australians, to take action to protect their hearing health and programs to increase awareness of the benefits of seeking treatment for hearing loss.
  • Sales practices within the hearing aid clinic industry, including the payment of commissions and incentives to clinicians to encourage the sale of hearing aids.
  • The introduction of the NDIS and its impact on the delivery of hearing services.



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