World Hearing Day is held on March 3 each year. Its aim is to raise awareness of how to prevent deafness and hearing loss. It is also a way of promoting ear and hearing care across the world.

It’s organised by the World Health Organisation and each year it decides the theme. It then develops evidence-based material such as brochures, flyers, posters, banners and presentations.

This year’s theme is Changing mindsets: Making ear and hearing care a reality for all.


Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO director-general, said: “Hearing loss has often been referred to as an ‘invisible disability’, not just because of the lack of visible symptoms, but because it has long been stigmatised in communities and ignored by policy-makers.”

World Hearing Day this year will focus on overcoming the challenges posed by societal misperceptions and stigmatising mindsets through awareness-raising and information-sharing, targeted at the public and health care providers.  

Key messages

1 Globally, more than 80% of ear and hearing care needs remain unmet. 
2. Unaddressed hearing loss poses an annual cost of nearly US$1 trillion globally. 
3. Deeply ingrained societal misperceptions and stigmatising are key factors that limit efforts for preventing and addressing hearing loss. 
4. Changing mindsets related to ear and hearing care is crucial to improving access and mitigating the cost of unaddressed hearing loss. 

Key Facts

By 2050, nearly 2.5 billion people are projected to have some degree of hearing loss, and at least 700 million will require hearing rehabilitation.

Over one billion young adults are at risk of permanent, avoidable hearing loss due to unsafe listening practices.

An annual additional investment of less than US$ 1.40 per person is needed to scale up ear and hearing care services globally.

Find out more about World Hearing Day here