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Deafness at work highlighted

2nd January 2007

Workers are being urged to get their hearing checked in a New Year initiative by the TUC and the Royal National Institute for Deaf People (RNID).

The organisations have set up a special helpline for those who are concerned about their hearing and employers are being urged to send their workers for hearing tests.  A spokesperson for the RNID said it was imperative that anybody with hearing problems be treated as early as possible and the TUC said that fears that careers could be harmed was behind some workers' reticence to admit to hearing problems.  TUC General Secretary Brendan Barber said: "Hearing loss is a real problem at work for many employees, who may be reluctant to own up to the fact that they can't hear as well as they used to be able to because they are worried that they may be sidelined as a result."

It is thought that 40% of the over 50s have some form of hearing loss which can have a significant impact their ability to interact with colleagues and clients. The RNID estimates that four million people could have improved hearing by using an aid.

 

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