Prevention pays dividends because hearing health is money in the bank
Although our overall health is improving, our hearing acuity is deteriorating! New figures published by the World Health Organization (WHO) reveal that 360 million young people aged between 12 and 35 years old are faced with irreversible hearing damage. Another 1.1 billion young people face the same risk. One of the causes is the increasing availability of MP3 players and Smartphones, which make it easier to listen to louder music more often. The noise levels at clubs music festivals and sports events further compound this problem.
The cost of preventive hearing healthcare is offset by the benefits, such as fewer accidents at work, lower rates of absenteeism and higher productivity.
Youngsters who have trouble understanding a conversation have fewer opportunities both at school and in the labour market later. Good hearing is an increasingly important requirement in the workplace.
The first impact hearing impairment has on companies is that the risk of accidents at work and the rate of absenteeism increases, which decreases productivity and increases production costs.
The second is that hearing impairment as an occupational disease is occurring at an earlier age, as more young people who already have hearing impairment enter the job market.
Thirdly, the postponement of retirement means companies have to rely more on the long-term employability of their workforce.
Investing in prevention will pay dividends, because absenteeism should improve and employees will remain part of the labor force for longer.