By Michelle Harder Fundraising Consultant
According to the Canadian Institute for Health Information, 3 million Canadians are admitted to the hospital annually, with an average length of stay lasting seven days.
Being admitted to the hospital, even for routine surgery, can be anxiety-producing for anyone but for those who are deafened or suffer from hearing loss there are often additional concerns like:
- How will I be able to communicate with staff?
- Will I have to repeat my needs to every person that comes into my room?
- Will they be annoyed with me if I don’t understand or respond?
- What happens if I miss important information?
- If I don’t respond, will that be taken as consent?
- What if someone makes a mistake because I mishear?
- Could my life be at risk because I can’t hear?
CHHA members tell us that they fear not being able to hear critically important information due to noise or the speed at which doctors and nurses do tasks.
In pilot projects, we found that the CHHA Hospital Hearing Kit makes hospital stays less stressful for people with hearing loss.
Visible cues that the patient needs special accommodations alert hospital staff to slow down, speak clearly, and ensure the patient fully understands important information being communicated before moving on.
This project will provide concrete tools that will aid communication and accessibility for deafened and hard of hearing individuals.
WHO WILL BE SERVED?
This project will target patients all across Canada who are self-identified as deaf or hard of hearing, and we will ship the kit to them no matter where they are. Some of our local branches and networks are already doing a great job providing these kits to those that need them already.
We are raising funds to reach those who are not currently being reached through existing programs.
Hospital staff will benefit from the program as they avoid the frustration, confusion and potential errors that come from communicating with a patient whose hearing loss is not identified. In addition, patients’ families will feel more confident and secure about their loved one’s ability to communicate and self-advocate when they are on their own during their hospital stay.
The estimated cost per hospital kit is $25.
Included in the cost per package are all physical items such as printed signs, visual cues, and administrative support necessary for assembly and distribution of the kits anywhere in Canada. Even Iqaluit.
We believe that introduction of a National Hospital Kit Program in Canada will provide tangible resources that will improve communication for Canadians with hearing loss so that they will be empowered to communicate effectively with doctors, nurses, and hospital staff.
Our campaign goal through the CanadaHelps Great Canadian Giving Challenge is for 100 kits. A total of $2,500. As a bonus, every dollar donated through CanadaHelps in June also gives us a ballot for a draw to win $20,000!
Please consider how you can help the hard of hearing community by providing funds for a hospital kit (or two)! And…help us try to win $20,000
Link To Donate