ELDERLY PEOPLE across East Berkshire have been experiencing problems with the NHS’s outsourcing of hearing aids.

New suppliers of the hearing aids have not have patients' health records updated, a lack of communication from health bosses has left users confused and not being able to get to appointments at new suppliers easily are some of the issues which have been troubling hearing aid users.

READ MORE: McDonald's ramp nightmares

The Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) in East Berks rolled out a new hearing service in January for over-55s who had non-complex hearing issues.

This meant five new providers were selected to supply hearing aids, including Specsavers and other independent clinics.

But at the CCG’s annual meeting in September, several hearing aid users raised concerns about the new service.

Bracknell News:

David Maxwell, from Bracknell, has been wearing hearing aids for six years and said the issues were “disconcerting” after he claimed Specsavers had no results from previous hearing tests he had done.

One woman sitting on the CCG panel added: “My father is 93 and he lives in Windsor.

“Now he has to go to Specsavers and he can’t actually get into the town because of his age, he can’t walk very well.

“It’s very difficult for elderly people like him due to the change of service – before he could park at the hospital.”

READ MORE: Off-licence suspended from selling booze

Another audience member said there was “no warning at all” about the changes which caused “a lot of confusion for elderly people.”

Bracknell News:

CCG chiefs tackled questions from audience members and one said hearing aid users who had received earpieces in the last five years were informed about the change, but others were not.

A spokesperson for East Berkshire CCG told the News: “The CCG would like to reassure patients that we will continue to work with our providers to address the matters that were raised and that their feedback is always welcomed.

“As part of this transition, over 10,000 patients who had accessed the service over the past five years were written to personally, explaining the change and given the option to select one of the six providers to continue with their care.

“As a result, people can now choose to be seen from a wider list of qualified providers, including access to a home visiting service if required.

NOW READ: The films featuring Bracknell

“This service was not previously available and particularly benefits those with mobility issues.”