Statement 1 Adults with earwax that is contributing to hearing loss or other symptoms, or preventing ear examination or ear canal impressions being taken, have earwax removed in primary care or community ear care services.
Statement 2 Adults with sudden onset of hearing loss in one or both ears that is not explained by external or middle ear causes are referred for immediate or urgent specialist medical care.
Statement 3 Adults with rapid worsening of hearing loss in one or both ears that is not explained by external or middle ear causes are referred for urgent specialist medical care.
Statement 4 Adults presenting for the first time with hearing difficulties not caused by impacted earwax or acute infection have an audiological assessment.
Statement 5 Adults presenting with hearing loss affecting their ability to communicate and hear are offered hearing aids.
Statement 6 Adults with hearing aids have a follow-up audiology appointment 6 to 12 weeks after the hearing aids are fitted.
NICE has developed guidance and a quality standard on patient experience in adult NHS services (see the NICE Pathway on patient experience in adult NHS services), which should be considered alongside these quality statements.
Other quality standards that should be considered when commissioning or providing hearing loss services for adults include:
A full list of NICE quality standards is available from the quality standards topic library.