What’s the problem?
Our recent report, ‘Valuing Audiology’, dug into how audiology services across England were performing. Our investigation revealed that, shockingly, 9 out of 10 Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs), the bodies responsible for funding local healthcare needs, didn’t hold at least one of these basic pieces of information needed to run a good service:
• The amount of money spent on adult audiology
• How many hearing aids were fitted
• Whether patients were benefitting from hearing aids.
Without these pieces of information, hearing aids – a lifeline for millions – are put at risk of cuts or rationing based on incomplete data.
Dropping by to say hi
With your amazing support, we raised our concerns in Parliament with 28 MPs from Tyneside to St Ives and places in between. With your experiences and information on your local area, we told your MP how they can make changes to improve and protect NHS audiology services. Your letters were key to kick-starting our journey with MPs to protecting hearing aids across England.
Not only were we able to raise the issue locally within constituencies but MPs could also raise it with the Department of Health and Social Care. Your experiences and letters resulted in a further three MPs taking action and lobbying the Government. They demanded mandatory data collection so CCGs across England are able to make informed decisions about audiology. This is a crucial step in minimising the postcode lottery when it comes to NHS audiology.
With change beginning to happen both locally and nationally, we still need your support in protecting hearing aids on the NHS. We’ll continue to put pressure on local health bodies and the Department of Health and Social Care to ensure that every CCG is making decisions about hearing aids with complete information.
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To find out more about NHS audiology services in England read our latest report ‘Valuing Audiology'