The stories we hear and the people we meet make it obvious that in general Deaf people have poorer health than hearing people, because access to doctors and to health information is made difficult when sign language is your first language. Now we’ve carried out the world’s first scientific study of the Deaf of health people compared to hearing people, which proves it’s true and tells us why it happens.
The report is being used to launch a campaign to get government, the NHS, doctors and other healthcare workers to change their ways. We want sign language to be easily available in medical settings, to make access to healthcare for Deaf people equivalent to the access that hearing people
It is great to see the world’s leading medical journal recognising the health inequalities faced by Deaf people. The journal published a main article on mental health, a commentary piece which looked at health generally, and an editorial. It also devoted the front page to the subject.
It’s well known that Deaf people are more likely than hearing people to suffer from depression or anxiety. Does that mean there is a higher rate of suicide among Deaf people? SignHealth commissioned research to find out.