Healthy hearing is the gateway way to robust learning. Children who cannot hear well, cannot learn well. hearScreen by the hearX Group is a world-class hearing screening solution that is available on a smartphone. The app was a recipient of the 2017/2018 AfriSam-SAIA Award for Sustainable Design.

According to the World Health Organisation, 3.2 million people suffer from disabling hearing loss in South Africa. In 2030 hearing loss will be the 7th most important contributor to the Global Burden of Disease above HIV/AIDS and TB.

The hearScreen app, which was initially researched at the University of Pretoria and was later licensed and commercialised by the hearX Group, significantly improves on current hearing screening models by allowing non-specialist personnel to do screenings in resource-constrained environments.

“The app was developed and designed through understanding our real-world socio-economic problems. This bears testimony to South African ingenuity and our potential to make a global impact on sustainable change,” says Nausheen Dawood, an audiologist at hearX. According to the company, the hearing screening solution cuts costs by over 80% with its model that allows for non-specialist personnel to execute the screening on children.

Most South Africans cannot afford hearing healthcare, and hearScreen presents a very efficient and straightforward solution to the very complex problem of healthcare access in our country.