Hearing care by community health workers using digital technologies

University of Pretoria
May 17, 2022

Globally, the third-largest cause of the number of years lived with disability is unaddressed disabling hearing loss. Hearing loss is expected to affect 2.5 billion individuals by 2050. The reality is that persons with hearing loss in most LMICs do not have access to hearing care due to barriers including a severe shortage of hearing health professionals, centralised service-delivery models, expensive diagnostic equipment requiring highly trained persons to operate.

Digital technologies have the potential to address many of the current barriers, and the COVID-19 pandemic has further catapulted the need and use of digital technologies to provide safe hearing healthcare services.

This paper explores a new innovative model using a range of digital technologies operated by community healthcare workers (CHWs) to deliver end-to-end hearing healthcare services to adults in LMICs.