Research shows that individuals with hearing loss are more likely to be readmitted after a hospital stay than those with healthy hearing.
A study conducted by researchers at New York University found that patients 65 and older who had difficulty communicating with hospital staff due to hearing loss were 32% more likely to be readmitted within 30 days when compared to those without communication difficulty.
Manatee Ear Center in Bradenton, Florida highlights how hearing loss can affect an individual’s overall health picture.
The senior author of the study, Jan Blustein, MD, Ph.D., NYU professor, said the stressful environment of the hospital makes those with hearing loss more at risk of readmission.
“People with hearing loss often have difficulty understanding speech in noisy and stressful situations,” she said. “Hospitals are noisy, chaotic and people with hearing loss may have trouble understanding key information, such as what medicines they should take after discharge, or how they should watch for or manage exacerbation of their symptoms. This puts them at risk for difficulties after they are discharged from the hospital.”
This correlation between hearing loss and the likelihood of readmission has not been shown previously. Researchers indicated that hospitals could help patients with hearing loss by offering the use of a number of assistive listening devices.
“There are simple devices that cost under $100 that have been successfully used by hospitals to assist hard-of-hearing patients,” Blustein noted. “But few hospitals use them. We hope that our research will help raise awareness of the potential to improve patient care by attending to hearing loss.”
Additionally, Manatee Ear Center offers a comprehensive hearing evaluation and hearing devices to meet an individual's personal hearing needs. Hearing aid, like the Oticon Siya can provide long term benefits.