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Home Publications Socioeconomic Position and Health-Seeking Behavior for Hearing Loss Among Older Adults in England.

Socioeconomic Position and Health-Seeking Behavior for Hearing Loss Among Older Adults in England.

Lenka Benova, Emily Grundy and George Ploubidis
Journal article

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: 

To examine whether socioeconomic position (SEP) is associated with progression in the health-seeking process for hearing loss.

METHOD: 

Logistic regression of data from a cross-sectional survey representative of noninstitutionalized, 50 years and older population of England (ELSA wave 2, 2004). Using self-reported hearing difficulty as starting point, we examined the association between SEP and health-seeking behaviors in 6 stages leading to hearing aid acquisition and use.

RESULTS: 

Higher SEP was associated with lower odds of self-reported hearing difficulty, adjusted odds ratio [OR] = 0.87 (95% confidence interval [CI] 0.83-0.91, p < .001). There was marginal negative association between higher SEP and receiving hearing aid recommendation (adjusted OR = 0.88, 95% CI 0.78-0.99, p = .05). SEP was not associated with any other stage of health-seeking behavior.

DISCUSSION: 

Among the noninstitutionalized older population of England, SEP-related inequalities exist in the prevalence of self-reported hearing loss. However, SEP is not strongly associated with progression in the remaining stages of health-seeking process during and after an individual's contact with the health system.

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