Ontarians with severe hearing loss in both ears will now have quicker access to special medical devices needed to improve their hearing and quality of life.
Ontario is providing funding so that 30 additional cochlear implants can be performed in Ottawa hospitals â€“ Childrenâ€™s Hospital of Eastern Ontario and The Ottawa Hospital â€“ between now and March 31, 2012.
A total of 184 additional cochlear implants are being provided at the five hospitals where cochlear implants are performed â€“ London Health Sciences Centre, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre and The Hospital for Sick Children are the other hospitals. This is being done to help reduce the wait time for children and adults who need these devices.
These five hospitals perform about 190 implants annually.
Today's announcement is part of the government's Open Ontario Plan to provide more access to health care services while improving quality and accountability for patients.
â€œOur government is investing in more cochlear implants in Ottawa to improve access to this needed medical device for children and adults with profound hearing loss in our community.â€
- Yasir Naqvi, MPP Ottawa Centre
â€œCochlear implants greatly improve the quality of life for people with severe hearing loss. Our government is taking action so that Ontarians can receive these life-changing implants sooner.â€
- Deb Matthews, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care
§Cochlear implants improve hearing for people with severe or profound hearing loss by placing electrodes in the patientâ€™s inner ear, which are attached to a microphone behind the outer ear and wired to an external speech processor.
§About 10 per cent of Ontarians with severe hearing loss are able to benefit from the cochlear implants procedure.
§Ontario is providing an additional $5.9 million to reduce the current wait time for cochlear implants.
Read more about the services available to children who are deaf or have a hearing loss.
Find out about the coverage of cochlear implants under the Assistive Devices Program.
Office of Yasir Naqvi, MPP
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