Over the recent months, Starkey Hearing Foundation celebrated the launch of five National Strategic Plans for Ear and Hearing Care in sub-Saharan Africa. These plans will provide actionable pathways to reducing preventable hearing losses and increase access to hearing professionals, rehabilitation, as well as support services for millions of people in low and middle-income countries over the next five years.
According to the latest World Health Organization (WHO) survey, only 42 of the 193 countries in the world have National Strategic Plans for ear and hearing care. The Foundation first supported the development of a National plan in Kenya in 2016. By working in close collaboration with the WHO and various stakeholders from the professional, academia, and relevant ministries, we are now systematically expanding to other low and middle-income countries globally. Starkey Hearing Foundation is the catalyst that brought all the stakeholders together, and our community-based approach to healthcare will allow successful implementation of the proposed programs to continue for years to come.
In 2018 we successfully supported Nigeria, Ghana, and the Gambia in the development and launching of their own unique National Policies and Strategic Plans on Ear and Hearing Care. This year, the Foundation provided support to both Rwanda and Tanzania in completing the development of their National Plans, and we are now working with Malawi, St. Lucia, Jamaica, Cambodia, Vietnam, and Tajikistan to replicate the same feat.