Most Americans know that the British people enjoy healthcare through the National Health Service. However, under the NHS’ new policy, Britain is now denying hearing aids to many people who need them to function. Over time, this change could end up costing the country far more in disability costs for older Brits.
Under the new trend toward austerity economics, the NHS is limiting the funds spent on a variety of specialized services and treatments, including hearing care. A British group that aims to provide both adults and children with the latest hearing technologies, the Ear Foundation reports that the NHS has been denying patient requests for cochlear implantation and other cutting-edge technologies in increasing numbers.
Hearing Loss a Growing Problem in Britain
According to experts, 10 million people in Britain currently suffer from some form of hearing loss. This can range from minor hearing impairments to profound deafness. Not only does hearing loss affect social function but it has also been linked to a wide array of health issues. In fact, studies show that people with hearing impairment are more likely to endure depression and frequent falls. Hearing loss has also been associated with an increased risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s.
Additionally, hearing loss can impact one’s ability to succeed in both social settings and the workplace. As the population of Britain continues to age, the disabilities stemming from hearing loss will only become more widespread. In the long run, unemployment rates could skyrocket as people with hearing issues struggle to hold onto their jobs. Similarly, the economy could suffer as a result of the lost wages.
By 2031, medical experts anticipate that 14.5 million Brits will be hearing impaired. Many people believe that, if the NHS doesn’t change its current policies, patients with hearing loss will have a significant effect on the nation’s financial resources.
What Causes Hearing Loss in Adults
Often caused by the aging process, adult-onset hearing loss can also result from exposure to loud noises such as music, pneumatic drills and factory sounds. In general, this type of hearing loss is permanent and can have a serious impact on your productivity and ability to enjoy daily life. If you think you may have suffered some form of hearing damage, contact your physician for evaluation and screening. Hearing aids can do a great deal to restore lost hearing and boost overall function and quality of life.
If you or someone you know would like to learn more about hearing loss and how to treat it, please feel free to schedule a consultation or contact one of our representatives today!