On the 30th November, Members of Parliament in the House of Commons debated on deafness and hearing loss.

The debate was organised by the Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Deafness, Jim Fitzpatrick, MP for Poplar and Limehouse.

Opening the debate, he said “On early years intervention, the first three and a half years are critical for the development of listening and spoken language. I would be grateful for any update from the Minister on Government thinking about ensuring that Auditory Verbal is put on the patient pathway as a follow-up to the newborn hearing screening.”

The three hour debate was attended by MPs from all parties. Discussion took place on a range of important issues affecting children and adults with hearing loss, including:

  • The criteria for eligibility for cochlear implants;
  • The Access to Work grant, and the impact of capping the amounts available;
  • The importance of early intervention;
  • Legal recognition of sign language;
  • The impact of hearing loss on well-being and inclusion; and
  • The implementation of the action plan on hearing loss.

We are grateful to Jim Fitzpatrick for calling on government to consider putting Auditory Verbal (AV) therapy on the patient pathway. We hope that government will acknowledge the evidence for AV therapy, it’s cost effectiveness, and the life-changing impact that AV therapy has had on so many families’ lives. 

If you would like to read the transcript from the debate, you can access it here or watch it here.