News Releases

COVID-19 puts older adults at greater risk, especially those with health problems such as diabetes, chronic pulmonary diseases and heart conditions. What we have not yet realized fully is the invisible factor for those with hearing, vision and/or cognitive impairments. By 75 years of age, half of Canadians have hearing impairments; by 85, half have both hearing and vision impairments. Those with sensory loss are also more likely to have cognitive impairment. It is common for residents in long-term care to have a combination of hearing, vision and cognitive impairments. In other words, those who are at the greatest risk for COVID-19 may also be those with the greatest risk for isolation because of their need for communication accessibility.

The coronavirus pandemic is an unprecedented situation impacting on everyone. For people who have a hearing loss, the impact of social distancing and the common use of face masks has created additional challenges. Typically, we need to be in close proximity to others and to read their lips so that we can communicate effectively. The good news is that there are solutions to our challenges as listed below.