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15th March 2017 - Jenny Marra MSP is backing a charity’s campaign to keep a life-changing hearing aid support service running in Dundee.
The North East Scotland MSP is supporting the charity Action on Hearing Loss Scotland’s efforts to secure funding to prevent the closure of its six monthly Hear to Help drop-in sessions across the city and support for residents in 12 sheltered housing accommodation.
Hear to Help volunteers, who have been trained by NHS Tayside audiology department to clean or re-tube service users’ NHS hearing aids, provide support for 900 people in Dundee.
The service also provides new hearing aid batteries and a range of information about assistive equipment such as amplified phones, TV listeners and vibrating / flashing alarms, which can make everyday life easier for people with hearing loss.
Grants from small trusts and charitable donations have kept Hear to Help running over the last three years but the service is now under threat of closure. The charity fears that, without securing new funding for 2017/18, the service will not continue beyond Spring.
The charity has contacted Dundee Health and Social Care Partnership to seek advice about how to apply for up to the £17,000 that is needed to prevent the service from closing.
Jenny Marra MSP said: “At a time when needless journeys to hospital are being reduced, I’m very concerned about how the pending closure of Hear to Help’s community drop-ins in Dundee will affect particularly older people who have hearing loss and mobility difficulties.
“The Hear to Help volunteers offer a convenient local service which makes it much easier for people to get the help they need to manage hearing loss in their everyday lives. I urge Dundee Health and Social Care Partnership to make every effort to provide funding to save this cost-effective community service from closure.”
Delia Henry, Director of Action on Hearing Loss Scotland, said: “Our Hear to Help service users will be devastated if our drop-in sessions in Dundee are closed.
“We fear that, without being able to access local support, many people with hearing loss won’t persevere with their hearing aids – which can take time to get used to – and will struggle to follow conversations with friends and family.
“We thank Jenny Marra MSP for supporting our efforts to keep our much-loved service running in Dundee.”