Seeking focus group participants for hearing health care study

The Breaking Barriers research team is seeking participants for online focus groups to identify practices and messages to empower BC primary care providers to be key instigators for increased, timely uptake of hearing health care. The project is co-led by researchers from the UBC School of Audiology and Speech Sciences and the Wavefront Centre for Communication Accessibility.

Why is hearing health care important?

Hearing loss ranks third worldwide in disability-related loss of years of health and is one of the most significant contributors to the global burden of disease. Untreated hearing loss affects communication and health-related quality of life and is linked to social isolation, greater risk of falls, and reduced financial security. Up to 65% of adults in BC who are 60 years of age and older will develop hearing loss. Fewer than 1/4 of these adults use hearing health care, with most delaying treatment.

Who can participate?

The following BC residents can participate:
•    Primary care providers (general practitioners, family doctors, nurse practitioners, primary care registered nurses), and recent retirees from the primary care field.
•    Hearing health care providers (audiologists, hearing instrument practitioners).
•    Adults who are 50 years of age and older who have expressed a hearing concern to a primary care provider in the last 5 years or their informal caregivers, including family or friends, who have directly supported others with hearing concerns.

What can participants expect?

Participants will join one of three online Zoom focus groups facilitated by research team members. They will be asked to share ideas about how primary care providers can support patients to pursue and receive hearing health care. This group discussion will last about 2 hours.

Will participants be paid?

Participants will be offered a $50 gift card for taking part in a focus group.

When will the focus groups take place?

Focus groups will be scheduled in early 2024 once the number of participants required to run the study has been recruited.

To join a focus group or for further details, email Craig Stevenson at

—Craig Stevenson
Partner & Community Engagement Coordinator, Breaking Barriers Project
On behalf of the research team: Dr Brenda Poon, Dr Lorienne Jenstad, Ms Danielle Lafleur

This post has not been peer reviewed by the BCMJ Editorial Board.

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