Seniors call for hearing aid industry clean-up

National Seniors is calling on the Federal Government to take action to prevent the exploitation of older Australians by unscrupulous operators in the hearing aid industry.

Chief Advocate Ian Henschke will tell the Inquiry into the Hearing Health and Wellbeing of Australia, sitting in Brisbane tomorrow, that after two investigations of the industry in a decade, it is time to clean up problems that the ACCC has labelled scams.

Mr Henschke says one in six Australians have hearing loss, and the figure will rise to one in four by 2050.

Lose just 3kg to gain health benefits

New research shows that losing as little as three kilograms could translate into health benefits for many Australians.

The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) said that if all Australians cut their Body Mass Index (BMI) by just one point for a person of average height, the overall health impact of obesity would drop substantially.

Hearing health on inquiry agenda

The Queensland public hearing of the Inquiry into the Hearing Health and Wellbeing of Australia will be held in Brisbane next Friday, 21 April.

The Australian Parliament’s Health, Aged Care and Sport Committee will meet representatives of National Seniors to discuss the hearing support needs of older Australians.

“Seventy-four per cent of Australians over the age of 70 experience hearing loss,” Committee chair Trent Zimmerman said.

“It is therefore vital that we ensure older Australians have access to high quality hearing services from trusted providers.”

Adults failing to eat their greens

It seems it’s not just children who turn their noses up at fruit and vegetables come dinner time – or any other time of the day.

Australia’s largest fruit and vegetable survey has found that four out of five Australian adults are not eating enough fruit and vegetables to meet the Australian Dietary Guidelines. But retirees and health industry workers are more likely to meet the recommended dietary guidelines than others.

200-year search for Parkinson's cure continues

University of Adelaide researchers are contributing to the ongoing global effort to better understand, treat and prevent Parkinson's disease, 200 years after the disease was originally described.

April is Parkinson's Awareness Month, and World Parkinson's Day is held every year on 11 April. 

This year marks the 200th anniversary of the publication of Dr James Parkinson's seminal work, An Essay on the Shaking Palsy, the first paper to describe the debilitating motor symptoms in the body associated with Parkinson's disease. 

Seniors missing out on free vaccines

Older Australians are a key group who are missing out on free vaccinations, new research shows.

The report, Vaccine Myopia:adult vaccination also needs attention, published in the Medical Journal of Australia (MJA), found that while nine out of 10 children were vaccinated, the vast majority of the total 4.1 million people eligible did not have their jabs for influenza, pneumonia or shingles.

Seniors call for health insurance shake-up

National Seniors has urged the Federal Government to focus on inefficiencies in the Australian health insurance system, rather than allowing private health insurers to keep jacking up premiums.

Chief Advocate Ian Henschke today said the affordability of private health insurance was one of the biggest concerns for older Australians.

Premiums increased by almost 40 per cent between 2010 and 2016, and would rise another 4.8 per cent from 1 April, which was around three times the rate of inflation.

Hearing aid stories – the good, the bad and the ugly

National Seniors would like to hear from members about their experiences obtaining or purchasing hearing aids.

We are interested in your experience of dealing with hearing aid service providers, both public and private, to assist our advocacy efforts in this area.

National Seniors wants to share your experience with representatives on the Australian Parliament’s Standing Committee on Health, Aged Care and Sport at a public hearing in Brisbane on 21 April.

Australians playing less competitive sport

Australia prides itself as a sporting nation but new research has shown that just one in five people now regularly plays competitive sport.

This was down from 27 per cent in 2001, according to the latest data from Roy Morgan Research, which monitors the participation trends in over 60 sports, fitness activities and outdoor leisure pursuits.

Whether one-on-one or team vs team, the number of Australians (aged 14 and over) who regularly play competitive sport has fallen since 2001.

Glaucoma goes undiagnosed

Around 300,000 Australians have glaucoma but at least half of them are unaware they have the eye disease.

In a statement marking World Glaucoma week (12-18 March), Professor Jonathon Crowston, managing director of the Centre for Eye Research Australia (CERA), said early diagnosis was vital for treatment but up to 90 per cent of sufferers had no easily recognisable symptoms.

“Glaucoma is a disease of the optic nerve, which is the only part of the brain that can be clearly seen. It causes the cables in the nerve to die off quicker than they should,” Professor Crowston said.

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