RNID has called on the government to implement a national hearing screening programme to address the effects of hearing loss, and reduce isolation and poor health in older people.
The call follows the publication of a new RNID report which found that while some people delay seeking help for hearing loss because they see it as a natural part of the ageing process, others delay seeking help due to stigma.
The report – based on interviews with UK hearing aid users – also found that a lack of joined-up health services, and people’s attitudes to hearing loss, were preventing people from taking action to address the problem.
RNID chief executive, Jackie Ballard, said: ‘Around four million people in the UK could benefit from wearing a hearing aid, but don’t get the help they need. People tell us they are worried to admit they have a hearing loss, it’s not seen as ‘normal’.
‘A national screening programme could tackle this stigma, make it easier for people to get their hearing checked, and help the wearing of hearing aids to become more widespread and accepted,’ she added.