Manchaiah, V., Easwer, V., Boothalingam, S. & Thammaiah, S.
Perspectives of the ASHA Special Interest Group, 1(1), 1-19. doi:10.1044/persp1.SIG17.12
Publication year: 2017

Abstract

Hearing loss is a global health concern, particularly in the low- and middle-income countries. Some of the reasons for this include, higher prevalence of hearing loss in these countries, lack of adequate awareness on hearing loss and its consequences, limited access to hearing care services to in suburban/rural areas, and high cost of such services. To make matters worse, health care services provided by the government in developing countries such as India are limited, and services provided by for-profit institutions are expensive. Therefore, there is a need for other stakeholders (e.g., non-governmental organizations) to bridge this service gap. In this paper, we introduce Audiology India (AI) to readers, an organization that is striving to improve ear and hearing health care services in India.

We begin this paper by providing an overview of the current status of hearing care services in India. Next, we describe the background of AI, its mission, and accomplishments. Briefly, the goals of AI are: (a) to provide community-based hearing care services to individuals with no access to mainstream ear-care; (b) to conduct campaigns to raise public awareness about hearing loss and avenues for its prevention; (c) to carry out need-based research to continuously fine-tune our services and advance audiology in India; and (d) to offer consultancy services related to ear and hearing care.