Hearing loss in the workplace: What’s in the news? (15-21 Feb)

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Sunday 21 February

 If you’re busy trying to juggle work and home life, then you might not have had time to catch up on  the news and social media this week.   Here’s a roundup of the highlights from my timelines, that should bring you up to date.  
  • Hearing loss and the risk of developing dementia
  • One in five US teens is found to have hearing loss
  • WHO launches survey on assistive devices
  • New study finds hearing loss affects 40% of musicians
  • DWP introduces video relay services for sign language users
  • Applewatch review and developments
  • Action on hearing loss launch new survey

In the news

Hearing loss and the risk of developing dementia

This week’s news seemed to be dominated by the reporting of research being conducted by Dr Frank Lin at the John Hopkins university in the US, which estimates that 36% of the risk of developing dementia is attributable to hearing loss. The research was reported widely in the UK press (including the Telegraph, Daily Mail and the Guardian) focusing on the potential that hearing aids have as a preventative measure.

One in five US teens has hearing loss

Disturbing results about the levels of hearing loss in teenagers from a new nationwide study of 12-19 years old in the US.

Who launches a survey on assistive products

WHO estimates that only 1 in 10 persons in need has access to assistive products. To address this, they are developing a WHO Priority Assistive Products List to help Member States to plan policies and programmes related to the provision of such products.  To this end, WHO is launching a global survey to identify the 50 Most Priority Assistive Products. To contribute to the survey, which is open until 3 March, click here.

New study finds hearing loss affects 40% of musicians

A new study across the UK has reported that 4 out of ten musicians are affected by hearing loss.

Department for Work and Pensions introduces cutting edge technology

The DWP is piloting video relay services in some of its call centres to improve access for British Sign Language users.

The Applewatch

Applewatch was in the news with both this review that caught my eye.  Its the second review I’ve seen from someone who has ushers syndrome. There has also been some speculation about the functions of the second generation Applewatch2

Action on Hearing Loss launch  survey on background noise

Action on Hearing Loss have launched a survey on background noise, hearing aids and assistive devices to help improve hearing in noisy environments. Please consider completing the survey as it will no doubt produce some valuable information that can be used for lobbying, as well as research and development.

This week’s blogs

And of course, here’s another opportunity to check out my blog posts from earlier this week: “Assessing the needs of deaf and hard of hearing communities“, and a summary of England’s “Action plan on hearing loss“.

Some Diary Dates

Finally, here are some dates for your diary

Lunch debate at the European Parliament – 1 March

In advance of World Hearing Day on 3 March, a lunch debate is being held on March 1st at the European Parliament.  The title of the debate is  “Hearing awareness. Professional Hearing Care Makes You Smarter and Healthier”, with the aim of presenting the benefits of professional hearing care.

Hearing loss and cognitive decline conference – 3 March

This conference aims to showcase the relationship between hearing loss and dementia, bringing together professionals from health and social care, academia, and the wider public, private and third sectors with those living and caring for deafness and dementia, providing a rare chance to engage with and learn from each other.

Ear Foundation: Adult Hearing Screening conference – 17 March

The Ear Foundation are planning a conference in London on 17 March on the subject of Adult Hearing Screening.  (Some of you might recall my recent blog ‘From hearing screening to hearables’ about the outcome of the latest deliberations of the National Screening Committee on the future of the programme.)

Hearing the Future: Rehabilitation of hearing loss and neuroplasticity – 2 April

This meeting held in Berlin will discuss and highlight the research progress on cochlear implants, stem cells gene treatment and drug deliveries to the inner ear.

British Society of Audiology – annual conference 25-27 April

This is the leading UK scientific forum for clinicians and researchers who have an interest in hearing, tinnitus and balance.

Hearing Loss Association of America: 2016 Convention 23-26 June

The Hearing Loss Association of America has announced the details of its convention for 2016 which will be held in Washington, DC between 23-26 June.  It looks like an interesting programme.

Association of Speech Language Interpreters (ASLI) – annual conference on 1-2 October 

The next ASLI conference will be held on 1-2 October in Newcastle upon Tyne . Check out ASLI’s webpage for their call for abstracts along with details of the conference theme and venue.


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