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Highlighting priorities for ear and hearing care - World Report on Hearing 

On World Hearing Day, 3rd March 2021, World Health Organization launched its first World Report on Hearing 

The World Report on Hearing (WRH) has been developed in response to the World Health Assembly resolution (WHA70.13), adopted in 2017 as a means of providing guidance for Member States to integrate ear and hearing care into their national health plans.

Based on the best available evidence, this report presents epidemiological and financial data on hearing loss; outlines available cost-effective solutions and sets the way forward through ‘Integrated people-centered ear and hearing care’ (IPC-EHC). The report proposes a set of key H.E.A.R.I.N.G. interventions that must be delivered through a strengthened health system to realize the vision of IPC-EHC. 

The WRH was developed in collaboration with experts and stakeholders in the field of ear and hearing care who informed the report’s strategic direction and ensured that it reflects a range of cultural contexts and approaches to hearing care. The report is global in its reach while keeping a special focus on low- and middle-income countries, where the number of people with hearing loss is not matched by the availability of services and resources.

Aim

The World report on Hearing aims to provide evidence-based guidance to drive actions for integration of quality EHC services into national health plans of Member States, as part of their work towards universal health coverage.

Key messages

The tagline for the dissemination of the WRH is Hearing Care for All, which encompasses the following key messages:

The number of people living with unaddressed hearing loss and ear diseases is unacceptable. 
Timely action is needed to prevent and address hearing loss across the life course. 
Investing in cost effective interventions will benefit people with hearing loss and bring financial gains to the society. 
Countries must integrate people-centered ear and hearing care (IPC-EHC) within national health plans for universal health coverage

The WRH is structured in four sections

Why hearing matters: hearing across the life-course
Solutions for everyone: hearing loss can be prevented and addressed
Facing the challenges: improving access to ear and hearing care
The vision of ear and hearing care: designing the way forward

Call to action

“Integrate people-centred ear and hearing care within national health plans for universal health coverage”