Hearing Preservation Projects

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In November 2003, it was brought to the attention of Port Shepstone Lions Club that there is a desperate need to establish a formal, well equipped Audiology Clinic on the Kwazulu Natal South Coast. Patients with hearing disorders could only be satisfactorily tested in Durban, some 140 kilometres away. The majority of patients are from rural and peri_urban areas, with little or no resources even to travel such distances. The Murchison Mission Hospital, located 10km inland from Port Shepstone, offered to house such a clinic within their premises. At the time, a monthly clinic was held using a roving Audiologist who served the whole district, referring patients to specialists in Durban if hearing impairment were indicated. The facilities available to the Audiologist were inadequate to identify hearing disorders with the equipment available.

The Lions Club of Port Shepstone, under the leadership of Project Co-ordinator, Lion Martin Rundle, rose to the challenge and applied for an L.C.I.F. Grant to assist with the costs of equipping the Clinic with the latest state-of-the-art audiology equipment. Owing to requirements and stipulations set out by L.C.I.F., the Lions Clubs of Ramsgate and Hibberdene came on board and assisted with contributions towards securing the Grant from L.C.I.F. Port Shepstone Lions have already funded the project to it's completion and are awaiting the transfer of L.C.I.F. Funds which have been approved.

During May 2005, the Audiology Clinic was officially opened during an official ceremony. High profile delegates which included, representatives from the KZN Health Department, Dr Terry Gilpin of the Murchison Hospital, DG Richard Duncan and the Presidents of Port Shepstone, Hibberdene and Ramsgate Lions attended the official opening ceremony.

The Lions Club of Port Shepstone continue to cover the annual costs for the calibration of equipment used within the clinic.

The Audiology Clinic has proved to be a huge success and is providing a vital service for the following populations in the region :
Region Population
Southern Kwazulu-Natal:3158445
Pondoland Region of Eastern Cape:2473440