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The Hearing Health Sector Alliance, a body compromising of consumer groups, industry associations, research institutes and professional associations has welcomed the October 2020 Federal Budget, saying that funding will assist in raising awareness of hearing loss and support Australians who are deaf or hard of hearing.

An investment of $21.2 million over five years in hearing health as part of the October 2020 Federal Budget will implement key initiatives from the Roadmap for Hearing Health.

Initiatives include:

  • improved capability of the aged care workforce in supporting residents with hearing loss;

  • a competitive research grants program to develop the evidence base for interventions to support vulnerable Australians;

  • support for the hearing healthcare workforce including a workforce audit and summit;

  • initiatives to improve early identification of hearing and speech difficulties for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children; and

  • a national three-year hearing health campaign that will focus on preventing, treating and destigmatising avoidable hearing loss and damage.

Hearing Health Sector Alliance Chair, Dr Tony Coles, welcomed the announcement, saying it was important the Government was funding the five key priority areas by the Hearing Health Sector Alliance and included in the Roadmap for Hearing Health.

“We’re delighted this funding will assist more Australians protect their hearing health, fund research into hearing loss, and support those who need greater access to audiological services,” says Dr Coles.

With one in six Australians experiencing hearing loss, and links between hearing loss, falls, depression and anxiety, cognitive impairment and dementia, it is important for Australians to protect their hearing and to gain a greater understanding to prevent, treat and manage hearing loss.

“The Hearing Health Sector Alliance is looking forward to working collaboratively with the Federal Government to implement these important initiatives as part of the Roadmap for Hearing Health, which will improve hearing outcomes for all Australians,” says Dr Coles.

Hearing Health Sector Alliance membership is a group of national representative organisations from the hearing health sector, including consumer groups, health professionals, industry associations, as well as research organisations. The Alliance’s vision is for all Australians who are deaf or hard of hearing to live well in the community and for all Australians to value their hearing.

Media enquiries: Megan Gidley (0414 492 674)

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