Survey for the equipment service for people who are Deaf or who have hearing loss

The Council wishes to gain the views of people who might benefit from a service that provides specialist assessment and equipment for people who are Deaf or have hearing loss. The survey will remain open until the 2nd December 2019.

The current equipment service for people who are Deaf or who have hearing loss within Bristol is called the “Deaf Equipment service” and the Service provider is the ‘Centre for Deaf’. There is no reduction to the budget for this service.

The service currently provides information and advice about equipment and adaptations which can be provided for people with a hearing loss and an assessment service for the provision of this equipment.
We are particularly interested in gaining views from:

  1. People who have experience of using services in relation to equipment for people with hearing loss.
  2. People that are likely to access this service in the future.
  3. People who refer or signpost to services

The survey should take no longer than 10 minutes to complete and is hosted here: https://www.smartsurvey.co.uk/s/BristolDeafEquipment/

If you would like to know more about the process of commissioning this service or request a copy of the survey in a different format including Easy read, BSL translation or hard copies please contact Steve Wimhurst using the contact details below:

Steve Wimhurst
Email: steve.wimhurst@bristol.gov.uk
Adult Commissioning Team (CH)
P.O. Box 3399
Bristol, BS3 9FS


Background information
In Bristol, it is estimated that 60,000 adults have a moderate to severe hearing loss projected to rise in line with an aging population. Of these, it is estimated that 1 in 40 people will have profound hearing loss.

The most common cause of hearing loss is ageing; the prevalence and severity of hearing loss increases with age. This can have a disproportionate effect on wider physical and mental health, independence and ability to work. People with hearing loss may find it difficult to communicate with friends, family and health and social care professionals and are greater risk of social isolation, anxiety, depression and dementia.

The diagnosis and management of other health conditions are often inaccessible for people who are deaf or have hearing loss due to the lack of communication support. When visiting the GP more than a quarter (29%) of people with hearing loss said they didn’t understand their diagnosis. Around two thirds (68%) of people who asked for an interpreter didn’t get one.

Hearing loss often occurs together with impaired vision in older age groups. Dual sensory impairment has a significant impact on communication and well-being and can cause social isolation, depression, reduced independence, mortality, and cognitive impairmen.


Key findings and recommendations from the BCC needs assessment for people who are Deaf or who have hearing loss (2019)

  1. Hearing loss: early detection is a priority as only one in three people who could benefit from hearing aids has them, leaving four million people with unmet needs.
  2. Evidence suggests that older people, people from minority ethnic groups, people living in areas with high levels of deprivation and people with a learning difficulty or Autism are at higher risk of developing hearing loss and less likely to have hearing loss identified.
  3. People should be provided early access to technology services that will enable them to live independently and minimise the impact of hearing loss on day-to-day life.
  4. Review public and retail premises and staff’s preparedness to serve people with hearing loss; review support available post diagnosis; review training in communication methods.
  5. Deafblind: Support care homes to recognise if their clients are deafblind; carry out a deafblind needs assessment; continue to keep records in line with the Care Act.
  6. Develop hearing loss strategies and plans in partnership with local health, social and voluntary organisations and people with hearing loss.
  7. Promote innovation and integration of services across the whole pathway, including access to rehabilitation and follow-up services including mapping, understanding and improve the hearing loss pathway; maintain existing services and support.

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