World Hearing Day video highlights the importance of hearing in life’s great moments

Mar 3, 2017
Innsbruck, Austria, 03 March 2017 –To mark World Hearing Day 2017, MED-EL, a leading provider of hearing implant solutions, is launching a global campaign to raise awareness of the importance of hearing health and addressing potential issues early. A campaign film, Moment of Silence, has been launched to illustrate that while there are moments in life when hearing matters; there are some when hearing is everything, with once in a lifetime sounds you would never want to miss.

Hearing loss affects over 5% of the world’s population with 360 million people currently living with disabling hearing loss worldwide.1 Furthermore, many more people who aren’t even aware they have a problem with their hearing and so remain undiagnosed. This year’s theme for World Hearing Day is ‘Action for hearing loss: make a sound investment’, highlighting the impact of hearing loss on both individuals and society, while drawing attention to different interventions to address it.

Professor Ingeborg Hochmair, MED-EL CEO, comments, “Hearing empowers us and enriches our lives and we have come a long way in enabling more and more people to overcome hearing loss as a barrier to communication. More needs to be done however, particularly to improve global access to and awareness of the full range hearing solutions available to people living with hearing loss. Science and technology has been at the forefront of MED-EL’s commitment to people with hearing loss since day one, and we are committed to continuing to raise awareness of this growing issue and encourage people to protect their invaluable sense of hearing."

The World Health Organization estimate that the financial cost of hearing loss to be 750 billion international dollars 2 every year 3, but the cost is also personal and contributes to an individual’s overall health. Untreated hearing loss affects communication and can lead to social isolation, anxiety, depression and cognitive decline.One in five people with hearing loss would benefit from hearing solutions such as hearing aids or hearing implants.

“We know precious moments can be missed for those people living with hearing loss”, said Ingeborg Hochmair, MED-EL CEO. “Regrettably, there is a great deal of misinformation and misperception about hearing loss. In addition, there is the fear of associated stigmatisation and often denial. Early identification followed by appropriate diagnosis and intervention and recognising the importance of an appropriate hearing solution can have profound benefits.”

About MED-EL

Austria-based MED-EL Medical Electronics is a leading provider of hearing implant systems with 29 subsidiaries worldwide. The family-owned business is one of the pioneers in the industry. The two Austrian scientists Ingeborg and Erwin Hochmair developed the world’s first microelectronicmultichannel cochlear implant, now considered the modern cochlear implant, which was implanted in 1977. The cochlear implant was and remains the first replacement of a human sense, the sense of hearing. In 1990 the Hochmairs laid the foundation for the successful growth of the company when they hired their first employees. To date, the company has grown to more than 1,700 employees around the world.

MED-EL offers the widest range of implantable solutions worldwide to treat various degrees of hearing loss: cochlear and middle ear implant systems, EAS (combined Electric Acoustic Stimulation) hearing implant system and auditory brainstem implants as well as the world´s first active bone conduction implant. In July 2016, MED-EL acquired the technology for a novel non-surgical bone conduction system from the Swedish medical device company Otorix, further expanding the number of people who can benefit from innovative hearing technology and reinforcing MED-EL’s mission to overcome hearing loss as a barrier to communication. People in over 100 countries enjoy the gift of hearing with the help of a product from MED-EL.


Doz. DI Dr DDr med. h.c. Ingeborg Hochmair

Press contact

Thomas Herrmann
MED-EL Medical Electronics 
Fürstenweg 77a 
6020 Innsbruck 

T: +43 5 7788 5182

1 World Health Organization (WHO). Childhood Hearing Loss: Act Now, Here is How! Brochure (2016). Last accessed: February 2017

2 The World Bank. What is an “international dollar”? Available at: Last accessed: February 2017

3 World Health Organization (WHO). Deafness and hearing loss factsheet. Available at: Last accessed: February 2017


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