Cochlear joins global effort to tackle the rising prevalence of hearing loss

  • Hearing Matters’ campaign supports families experiencing hearing loss
  • World Health Organization (WHO) releases new data

Cochlear Limited (ASX: COH), the leader in implantable hearing solutions, is joining forces with the World Health Organization (WHO) and members of the international hearing care community to raise awareness of hearing loss as a global public health priority on World Hearing Day.

New figures released today by the WHO reveal that over 466 million people now live with disabling hearing loss, compared to 360 million in 2011. Unless action is taken, the WHO says this number could rise to over 900 million, or one in ten people, by 2050.1 As the prevalence rates rise, the global cost of unaddressed hearing loss has been estimated at $750 billion per year.2

David Cade, M.D Chief Medical Officer, Cochlear, welcomes the WHO theme and campaign for this year’s World Hearing Day – ‘Hear the Future: and prepare for it’.

“World Hearing Day is a reminder that hearing loss is a major public health issue around the globe. Highlighted today is the significant human and economic cost of untreated hearing loss and the need to act now – for the future. It’s clear this trend is rising due to population growth and ageing, and it will take a collaborative effort from governments, academia, industry, health professionals and the general public to improve future hearing health outcomes.”

“Today Cochlear proudly launches ‘Hearing Matters’, a community awareness campaign designed to help families and friends recognise the symptoms of hearing loss, and provide support to their loved ones to seek further information and treatment. Awareness is key if we want to shift the needle on prevention and treatment of hearing loss,” said Dr. Cade.

Promoted widely through online and social media channels, the ‘Hearing Matters’ campaign highlights that everyone deserves to hear what the world has to offer. The campaign encourages everyone to reach out today to people they know who might be struggling to hear.

The ‘Hearing Matters’ campaign highlights:

  • Real stories from individuals who have received a life-changing hearing solution.
  • The significant impact of untreated hearing loss.
  • The importance of early diagnosis for people and hearing tests.
  • Importance of professional help in understanding possible hearing solutions that may be suitable for individual.

The general public are encouraged to visit the website HearingMatters.info and share information to family and friends with hearing loss through the following social media handles #HearingMatters on #WorldHearingDay (Help them #HearTheFuture).

2018 World Hearing Day

On World Hearing Day, the WHO reinforces the cost-effective actions recognised as a critical step for addressing the impact of global hearing loss, including: 3

  • Preventing hearing loss by protecting against loud sounds and identifying and treating ear infections;
  • Identifying hearing loss early through screening of newborns, school children and adults over 50 years;
  • Providing rehabilitation together with support for continuous use of hearing aids
  • Improving access to cochlear implants.

The WHO hearing loss stats will be released on 3 March.

http://www.who.int/deafness/world-hearing-day/whd-2018/en/

References

  1. World Health Organization. 3 March 2018: World Hearing Day (internet). March 2018. Available at:  http://www.who.int/deafness/world-hearing-day/whd-2018/en/
  2. World Health Organization. Action For Hearing Loss: Make a Sound Investment (brochure). March 2017. Available at http://www.who.int/pbd/deafness/world-hearing-day/2017/en/
  3. World Health Organization. 3 March 2018: World Hearing Day (internet). March 2018. Available at:  http://www.who.int/deafness/world-hearing-day/whd-2018/en/