Consumer Guide 2 - Page 15

It’s so easy to get your hearing checked, but most of us will struggle to take this first step. The simplest way is to request our ONE MINUTE HOME HEARING CHECKER, a pop-up type card that plays 4 electronic beeps. Simply press the buttons and see if you can hear them. If you can’t, you need to take the next step. Please either visit your GP who will refer you to your local Audiology Department, or Any Qualified Provider (AQP) of NHS hearing aids. Alternatively, you can contact a Private Hearing Healthcare Professional in your area. All staff that you will deal with will be trained and qualified to conduct a hearing test to the same level, and monitored by the Health and Care Professions Council to ensure all are conversant with the latest guidance and procedures. It may be that a hearing loss is caused by impacted earwax or by an underlying health issue. If this is the case, you will be referred to the correct person who can investigate this further. All persons involved in the testing of hearing in the UK are required to refer where appropriate. If you have a hearing loss that requires an electronic solution, you should be given a demonstration of hearing aids with the correct prescription on that first appointment. Because we understand how concerned you may be about making the right decision, in most cases, we allow you to take a pair of hearing aids away with you on day 1, for a real-life trial so you can find out for yourself how well you’ll hear. NHS or Private? The main advantage of seeking help through a Private Hearing Healthcare Provider is that you can choose from a wider range of makes and models of hearing aids (in most areas, the NHS choice is very limited and is almost always a behind the ear type). Another advantage of seeking Private Hearing Healthcare is that it will most likely be the quickest route to receive your hearing aids and accessing your follow up appointments will probably be easier. However, NHS aids are free, private aids cost at least £300 each. Please be aware that other mail-order products exist but this route for most will be too risky and ill-advised. In our experience, hearing aids do require to be fine-tuned to an individual’s specific needs, taking into account the physiology of the hearing loss, their lifestyle and their cognitive processing abilities. To get the very best results, several fine tuning appointments can be needed. We provide 3 such appointments in the first month as standard. 15