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Mental health problems twice as prevalent in deaf people

Posted on 16/03/2012

Provision of specialist services needed to improve access to mental health services for this population (The Lancet)

In response to the article The health of deaf people: communication breakdown (extenral link, opens new window), published in The Lancet (External link, opens new window) on Friday 16 March, Action on Hearing Loss’ Director of Research, Policy and Government Relations, Roger Wicks said:

‘Action on Hearing Loss welcomes this review. Our own research, carried out in Scotland in 2010 (PDF 124kb, poens new window), confirms the authors’ findings. In conjunction with Glasgow Caledonian University, we found deaf people faced numerous barriers when accessing mental health services, such as a general lack of deaf awareness, lack of communication support (for example, BSL interpreters) and a lack of technical support (for example, hearing aid induction loop systems).

‘We want to see policies and procedures in place in to enable communication support professionals to be booked in line with individuals’ needs. We recommend that health services only use communication professionals who are registered with the National Register of Communication Professionals working with Deaf and Deafblind people) (NRCPD (external link, opens new window).’

Get in touch

For further information on our research, please contact:

Information Line

Telephone: 0808 808 0123
Textphone: 0808 808 9000


Alternatively, you can download our report 'Unheard, unseen - the state of mental health services in Scotland for people who are deaf or deafblind' (PDF 124kb, opens new window).

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