By Michele DiStefano, Director of Audiology, CHC
One of the goals established by the World Health Organization for World Hearing Day is to highlight the positive impact a primary care provider can have on an adult taking action to address their hearing loss. Having PCPs discuss hearing loss at checkups is a goal we all can support!
When a PCP takes the time during a medical checkup to address hearing health with a patient, that person is far more likely to take the initiative and schedule a hearing test with an audiologist in order to diagnose and treat their hearing loss. Research shows that of all the factors influencing hearing health decisions, a recommendation by a physician has the most clout with consumers.
Discuss Hearing with Your PCP
Does your PCP ask you about your hearing health? If not, consider raising the topic yourself. It's a conversation worth having because hearing loss, when unaddressed, can have devastating effects on all aspects of a person's life.
A vast body of research now supports the findings that untreated hearing loss not only negatively impacts communication, but also significantly increases the risk of social isolation, depression and falls. Further, hearing loss in older adults, when left untreated, is associated with a five-fold increase in dementia. The takeaway: Hearing loss and related issues demand swift diagnoses and meaningful treatments.
Let's Work Together
CHC is proud to serve as a hearing health partner to physicians throughout the New York Tri-State area. The patients they refer to us benefit from our multi-disciplinary approach and clinically outstanding care. CHC can also be an invaluable resource to medical offices everywhere, offering tools and tech tips to help practices be more supportive to their patients with hearing loss.
Two examples are:
We're pleased to see that each year more and more PCPs are making their patients' hearing health a priority. But there's more work to be done.
Please spread the word with your physician that hearing care is health care and that they have the opportunity to make a more meaningful difference in their patients' lives through routine hearing screening and hearing health education.
Working together, we can ensure more people get the hearing care they need and deserve.