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March 10, 2004

Call to bolster services for deaf

From: BBC News - London,England,UK - Mar 10, 2004

The health service is wasting £500,000 every year in Northern Ireland, a new report has claimed.

The survey for the Royal National Institute for the Deaf shows that more than a third of deaf or hard-of-hearing patients miss at least one appointment.

This is due to a lack of communication, according to the report.

Its authors also found that many were taking the wrong dosage of medication.

Brian Symmington from the RNID said the results were worrying.

"This report shows that there are significant problems in communication between health service professionals and the deaf and hard-of-hearing community.

"I would like to see deaf awareness training for doctors, nurses and health care staff.

"I would like to see better use being made of interpreters in the hospital situation.

"That might lead to less likelihood of misinterpretation of medication and treatment."