The Deaf And Hard Of Hearing (DHOH)

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The United States (US) a developed nation, the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (DHOH) community is faced with serious health deprivation (Pick, 2013). The chance of developing cardiovascular diseases (CVD), is as high as any other diseases faced in developing countries (Kuenburg, Fellinger, & Fellinger, 2015). Deaf and Hard of Hearing people have low life expectancy due to the inadequate health care services (WHO, 2015). It is questionable to find out what percentages of DHOH population are affected by CVD. Communication barriers play a vital role in access to health care services (Pick, 2013; Zazove & Doukas, 1994; Kuenburg et al., 2015). For years, the national health surveillances have excluded DHOH population provided that little or emerging…show more content…
An estimate of $30 billion annually is spent to care and treat a DHOH person in the US (Zazove & Doukas, 1994). The obstacles faced in the DHOH population are inability to communicate directly with their health care providers, inability to comprehend health literatures, referral services lack access to qualified medical American Sign Language (ASL) interpreters (Zazove & Doukas, 1994; National Association of the Deaf, n.d.). A prime frustration among patients-physicians in barriers to communication is the respect for autonomy in the two-way flow of information and disclosure issues (Zazove & Doukas, 1994). The inability for a two-way flow of communication is a result of DHOH lack English proficiency to write and comprehend written English (Zazove & Doukas, 1994). Unfortunately, the request for ASL interpreters is often not provided at every medical visit (Zazove & Doukas, 1994). For the cause of not having interpreters available, less qualified experience person often a family member disrupts patient’s autonomy and jeopardize patient rights to confidentiality (Zazove & Doukas, 1994). The intervention suggests the need to advocate for patient's rights to confidentiality by ensuring qualified medical interpreters are at every medical visit or employing the number of DHOH medical expertise

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