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Ex-servicemen: Hearing Impaired

Volume 463: debated on Tuesday 17 July 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence when and how ex-servicemen and women waiting for digital hearing aids due to service-related hearing loss will be informed of their priority status. (149673)

Advice regarding entitlement to priority treatment from the NHS is referenced in Leaflet 2 which is sent out by the Service Personnel and Veterans Agency with the war pension disablement acceptance notification letter.

Regular reminders about priority treatment for war pensioners are circulated by the Health Departments to senior NHS managers who are tasked to ensure that relevant clinical staff are aware. Reminder action, due this year, will reference this issue. Priority for assessment, treatment, aids etc is decided by the clinician in charge based on clinical need.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what instructions have been sent to NHS trusts in relation to affording priority status to ex-servicemen and women needing digital hearing aids due to service-related hearing loss. (149674)

MOD is working with the UK Health Departments regarding awareness of NHS priority treatment among health professionals. Later this year Health Departments will distribute reminders to the chief executives of trusts requiring them to ensure that general practitioners and hospital clinicians are aware of all those veterans who are eligible for priority treatment, including the group who have noise-induced sensorineural hearing loss accepted as caused by service. Priority refers to assessment, treatment and provision of aids. Allocation of priority is by the clinician in charge based on clinical need.