Terms of Reference

Taking into consideration the significant percentage of Australians experiencing hearing loss and the related social and economic impact of hearing impairment to the long term health and wellbeing of Australia, the Standing Committee on Health, Aged Care and Sport will inquire into and report on:
1.
The current causes and costs of hearing loss, and ear or balance disorder to the Australian health care system should existing arrangements remain in place;
2.
Community awareness, information, education and promotion about hearing loss and health care;
3.
Access to, and cost of services, which include hearing assessments, treatment and support, Auslan language services, and new hearing aid technology;
4.
Current access, support and cost of hearing health care for vulnerable populations, including: culturally and linguistically diverse people, the elderly, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders and people living in rural and regional areas;
5.
Current demand and future need for hearing checks and screening, especially for children (12 years and younger) and older Australians at key life stages;
6.
Access, availability and cost of required drugs, treatments and support for chronic ear and balance disorders sufferers;
7.
Best practice and proposed innovative models of hearing health care to improve access, quality and affordability;
8.
Developments in research into hearing loss, including: prevention, causes, treatment regimes, and potential new technologies;
9.
Whether hearing health and wellbeing should be considered as the next National Health Priority for Australia; and
10.Any other relevant matter.

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