Friday, 11 January 2019

Deaf and HoH Support at UHNM

Deaf and Hard of Hearing Support at UHNM from UHNM NHS Trust on Vimeo.

Still gaps in their awareness but a really good effort.  All deaf don't sign, don't lip read, and all HoH don't either, always ensure there is no blanket acceptance of need.  I would have forseen issues with a glass screen and someone trying to communicate to me that way, as I don't carry a card, and I don't use sign either, of course, if you are in a queue and the counter staff haven't the time then it can quickly break down and become stressful.  

I know most deaf would not attempt to go to a hospital unsupported so they are catered for mostly, it is the others with no defined effective communication as such who are elderly etc who present at POC.  With no effective lip speakers on hand e.g, lip-reading is mostly zeroed as a format that can be used.   Hearing aids can be zeroed too with no effective medical-patient loop.  I think most would have resorted to writing things down. Personally, I take all relevant details with me in written form, and have few issues after.  Of course, emergency admission is an absolute terror as everyone has to wing it.  In those cases, deaf may refuse to go to a hospital unless supported first which can be very risky.

Woman Can't Hear Men's Voices Because Of Rare Condition

Woman Can't Hear Her Boyfriend's Voice Because Of A Rare Condition. Credit: AsiaWire
Stress is known to be bad for your health, but it hit one woman so badly she actually went deaf - well, to men anyway. 

This isn't a selective hearing joke - Chen, from Xiamen in China, woke up one day and she was unable to hear her boyfriend when he spoke - or any men, as it turned out. After Chen went to a specialist ear, nose and throat doctor (ENT) she was diagnosed with a condition called 'reverse-slope hearing loss'. This condition hinders Chen's ability to hear low-frequency sounds, such as the average grown man's voice. 

The ENT specialist at Qianpu Hospital and a female doctor, Dr Lin Xiaoqing, said: "She was able to hear me when I spoke to her, but when a young male patient walked in, she couldn't hear him at all."  This kind of low-frequency hearing loss is said to be caused by a number of different things such as Wolfram Syndrome 1, Meniere's disease, Mondini dysplasia and sudden hearing loss. But Dr Xiaoqing said Chen may have developed the condition due to fatigue and stress after Chen said she'd been getting stressed and losing sleep over working too much. 

'Sensorineural hearing loss' can result in a low-frequency hearing loss - a type caused by inner ear hair cells getting damaged. Any damage to the cells can impact a person's hearing because the hair cells make the sound travel from the outer ear to the brain. Woman Can't Hear Her Boyfriend's Voice Because Of A Rare Condition. Credit: AsiaWire Woman Can't Hear Her Boyfriend's Voice Because Of A Rare Condition. Credit: AsiaWire Anyone who suffers from low-frequency hearing loss, generally, can't hear noises that have a frequency of 2,000 Hz or below. 

High-frequency hearing loss is much more common and generally means people struggle to, or can't hear the voices of women and children.

Speak OUT!

Image result for deaf don't speakATR's weekly round-up of current angst on the 'non-Deaf social media, and it is the old issue of speech versus sign it seems.

"My voice killed any options of support really, nobody (deaf or hearing) believed I couldn't hear, and in applying for a welfare benefit was actually accused at one point of fraud because 'the deaf can't talk, and you clearly can..'. I don't know who to blame, the deaf signers, the welfare agencies, or what passes for awareness these days!"

"I lost my hearing at the age of 21, therefore I grew up and went to standard schools. Now, 30 years later, profoundly deaf, especially when HA fail me, strangers hear me speaking 'normal' and don't believe that I am deaf."

"Our 'voices' are being drowned out in a never-ending promotion of the 'deaf and dumb' angle, rejection of hearing loss as a disablement, and, it comes from the deaf signing areas too. Their opposition to spoken or written English and its grammar, the tuition of sign language omitting voice use (As it offends deaf people), is at root, despite major campaigns for text access, it is a confusing mish-mash of disjointed and contradictive definitions of what deafness is, who deaf area yadda yadda, what communications we use, or what culture we follow, is at root.  They are a crazy mixed up bunch."

"For those of us losing or have lost hearing only one thing is important communication. I think our communication issues got lost in the post somewhere. I suppose the fact the mainstream and its systems have bought in to this misinformation over the years and why people like ourselves are being ignored. To be honest as a result of these things those of us who manage despite it all, are the sole area who can teach real awareness, not those for whom inclusion is entirely relative and off in some area of their own demanding everyone accommodates them, which is unrealistic and not really helping them either. "

"It's cultural BS, I don't buy their deprived area status, they have a national support system here and in the USA,  we don't, and have never had it, their abuse every day of 'Deaf & HoH' remit is now universally accepted and as such removed our voice and gave it to them."

"I don't want to appear resentful either, but the continuing distortion of need by these strange cultists of the signing ilk, is causing hardship for my peers. Who speaks in our name? Erm... nobody does, especially not them. We are left with few choices, we oppose the signing deaf for misinforming awareness, attack the systems for taking notice of it, or unite and demand the majority gets its voice back, and remove 'HoH' from their output.  Trying to educate the signing area on awareness or inclusion has proven near impossible."

"The UK HoH won 888 subtitles and captioning on TV output in the mid 20thc, the biggest ever advance in access for us, and the sign user who also benefitted, but done nothing since.  Now we see these signers opposing subtitling in favour of a face-pulling silence... Its really down to the acquired and deafened, not the signers... our apathy has given them free rein to go for what they want regardless if our inclusion or needs are being lost in that message. The HoH need to start campaigning as one unit and not buy into the 'one man, one issue' approach.  This is one case where the individual CANNOT win the day.  That is divide and rule and we are being run in awareness terms by a vociferous minority of sign using activists, who have entirely different aims to ours."

"I'm angry this *** - ***** site is attacking sign using people all the time, where is the counter view ?"

***_***** Site Mod:   "I am allowing this singular poster to raise his or her question just this once... We felt this area of hearing loss did not have a social media platform whereby they could express various concerns about their support and access, with regards to different areas with hearing loss.  While it is true to say we now discourage cultural input, it was a decision taken after initially inviting them to respond, they resorted to personal attacks and promotion of sign language instead of making a real contribution.  We very often forward such concerns to their charities/representation and other support bases for feedback.

They accused our members of discrimination, instead of responding, which we felt was unfair.   We resorted reluctantly to vetting people who applied to join this site, it would appear then, that such anti areas decided to refrain from joining instead.  We don't feel we operate any differently to 'enclosed'  'Deaf' sites in that non-signing contributors are deterred from joining or participating in their areas.  It is the current nature of things.  Some deaf charities feel raising concerns about inclusion is causing disharmony, our members say they just feel they are covering themselves to maintain funding, and toeing a line that has been created by others, a line they disagree with.  A number of our members have stated they are still actively blocked from such sites and prevented from raising points, including  the BBC and others."

"Didn't the ATR blogger ask GOOGLE to warn Deaf areas their 'TAB's'  were misleading?"

ATR:  "I think you mean that 'Deaf & Hi/HoH' remit thing?  Yes I suggested to Google the use of 'HoH' by them was misleading when output was very obviously about cultural deaf and sign language, and they aren't including us either via access, or content.  Google said that they objected to ATR complaint on the grounds HoH used sign too, which ATR believes was also misleading as they failed to provide statistics to back it up.  The Deaf equivalent of fake news. ATR did not buy Google's response, in that when the CONTENT was not relative to HoH or indeed aimed at the area, they still kept adding 'HoH' tabs to output and still do.  Is it by design or included as part of the equality laws?  Either way, it was misleading.  

Google decided they did not want a battle with cultural deaf and being America based, they were hamstrung by their own A.D.A.  Had it been the UK we would have tried blocking the deaf doing this via our trade description laws, but defining content was difficult if not impossible to regulate.

For many who provide sign only output they add 'HoH' by habit or rote, and it needs to change, as it blurs the inclusion process.  It also affects funding provisions for those with hearing loss, as the fundings fail to include the areas the remit is for.  E.G. If ATR provided 'Deaf & HoH' output with no sign in it, no Deaf and no culture in it, they would complain almost immediately and label it some sort of discrimination,  but I don't think the playing field is level at all.  Cultural deaf are opportunists first and foremost, and tag on to any bandwagon with regards to hearing loss to promote sign use and culture which are not the same things.  They see any sort of successful HoH campaign and demand their inclusion straight away, we, let them get away with it."