n South African Medical Journal - Turning up the volume on hearing loss in South Africa : editorial

Volume 105, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0256-9574
  • E-ISSN: 2078-5135



Estimates of the world's population living with disabling hearing loss, defined as >40 dB in the better-hearing ear in adults (>15 years) and >30 dB in children (0 - 14 years), currently run to 360 million people worldwide. Of even more concern is that the majority of those affected live in the low- and middle-income communities of the developing world (South Asia, Asia-Pacific and sub-Saharan Africa (SSA)). As South Africa (SA) falls within SSA, increasing awareness and raising advocacy are key to addressing the problem at a national level. The challenge in addressing this global burden lies not only in early identification in high-risk groups (both children and adults), but also in the provision of early interventions.

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