Mothemela, B.G., Swanepoel, D.W., Manchaiah, V. & Mahomed-Asmail, F.
American Auditory Society (AAS), Scottsdale, Arizona (USA), March 2023.
Publication year: 2023

Objectives: Factors influencing hearing aid outcomes such as hearing sensitivity, age and gender have been widely studied but factors such as social networks, mental health and service delivery models have limited investigations. This study aimed to identify and describe factors that influence hearing aid outcomes including social networks, mental health and service delivery models.

Design: A prospective cross-sectional survey design was used to explore factors that predict hearing aid outcomes. An online Qualtrics survey was sent to hearing aid users on an online platform

( between October and November 2021. The survey contained questions on patient demographics, audiological, general health and social factors, and self-reported hearing aid outcomes using the International Outcome Inventory for Hearing Aids (IOI-HA). Regression models evaluated potential predictors of hearing aid outcomes on the IOI-HA.

Results: 398 hearing aid users completed the survey with an average age of 66.6 (13. SD) years of which 59.3% were male. Hearing aid benefit and satisfaction (IOI-HA total score) was predicted by social networks of people with hearing loss with (p<.010; 0.03 Exp B [0.01-0.1 95% CI])/without hearing aids (P<.001; -0.1 Exp B [-0.3-0.1 95% CI]), mental health (P< 0.05; 0.6 Exp B [0.01-1.2 95% CI]), service delivery model (P<.003 Exp B[-2.6-0.5 95% CI]), work situation (p<.001; 1.9 Exp B [0.7-2.8 95% CI]), quality of life (P<.005; 1.2 Exp B [0.3-1.1 95% CI]) and self-reported hearing difficulty (P<.02; 0.8) Exp B [0.2-1.5 95% CI]).

Conclusions: Social networks defined as exposure to persons with hearing loss using hearing aids, mental health, service delivery models and work situations have been identified as important factors predicting hearing aid outcomes. These newly identified factors can inform and support optimal with hearing aid outcomes.