Cochlear Implants FAQ - Country Information

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(Contributed by Maree Madden at 13 Dec 1993.)

Many people in Australia have received cochlear implants. An address for a support group is:

Cochlear Implant Club and Advisory Association (CICADA)
25 Paxton Crescent
New South Wales 2120

Phone: 61 2 634 5773
FAX: 61 2 682 5872

CICADA prvodies support through fellowship for new inplant recipients, their families and associates. The organisation serves as a meeting ground for the sharing of any problems encountered by patients during the time of adjustment to the artificial sound. CICADA also provides:

  • counselling, pre-and post-operatively
  • information on the cochlear implant
  • a regular newsletter and brochures

Young children and babies are also receiving the implant and signing Deaf people are not happy about it. The Australian Association of the Deaf has a policy on the Cochlear Implant. The Cochlear Implant was actually developed in Australia (much as it pains me to say that!!!). The operations are performed here.


(Contributed by Lulkin at 1 Dec 1994.)

In the city of Porto Alegre there is a group of doctors/researchers in a local hospital working with CI and in a recent article they stated that the material used in their researches had many components Brazilian- made which meant a lots of savings for the hospital.

The total cost of the implant was about of 1/4 of the price abroad (in the USA, I suppose) and it costs US$8,000. In Brazil that stilll means a lot of money, considering that our minimum monthly salary is around US$70 !!!

The only professionals dealing with this staff are fonoaudiologists, of course! There are no Deaf people involved or consulted.


(Contributed by Bob Gray at 12 Dec 1993.)

Cochlear implants are done here. Most of them are either done in Toronto, or down in the USA. I have two friends who have had cochlear implants - one had a severe hearing loss since birth, and has had almost unbelievable success with the implant and can now talk on the phone without any outside aids. (She obtained the implant after she suddenly lost all her hearing). Another friend (profound hearing loss, since birth) had the implant, but it was only a marginal improvement.

Great Britain

(Contributed by Ishbel Donkin at 15 Dec 1993.)

The National Association of Deafened People (NADP) has since its inception in 1984 been very pro-cochlear-implantation whilst at the same time advocating flexibility in communication methods. Its members, of whom I am one (having retired from its executive committee earlier this year, cover a wide range of types of deafness, i.e. some born-deaf, some partially hearing, some deafened in childhood and others as adults either progressively or suddenly and totally.

Actually, the British National Health Service has been provided with funding from the government to carry out the operation at centres around the country. It is feared that funding may be restricted in future although there's campaigning going on against that possibility. Several friends of mine have had this operation, one or two privately in Austria and all those I've met with cochlear implants say it's marvellous. I know of no children with these but I don't move in their circles.


(Up to date as of 15 jan 2006)

CI operations are paid for by the government for children needing them up to age 18. People older than 18 have to provide their own funding, although their health care providers reimburse them with 30% of the CI cost. Currently, there are discussions about adding CIs to the national health basket (a list of medical procedures which are covered by the national health insurance), which if successful will mean that CI costs will be covered by the government.

Some statistics (source: a message dated 18 Dec 2005 in Prof. Kronenberg's forum):

  • There are 5 CI centers in Israel.
  • About 180 CI operations are performed each year. Their distribution among the CI centers is as follows:
    Sheba Medical Center 60-65
    Bnei Ziyon 40-45
    Hadassah Ein Kerem 30-40
    Schneider 30-40
    Beer Sheva 5-10
  • 70% of those operations are performed on children.
  • Each year, about 80% newly-discovered cases, who have an indication for the operation, are operated upon.

Prof. Jona Kronenberg, ENT department manager in Sheba Medical Center, and one of the Israeli CI surgeons, has a Web site covering all aspects of ENT, including CI operations. This Web site has also a Questions/Answers forum. The statistics given above are from this forum.

There is also a Web forum and self-help group of CI implantees.


(Contributed by Johann Roppen at 05 Nov 1996.)

Approximately 100 Norwegians have received the implant, and what I've heard is that the operations have not been failures (accidently cutting nerves etc.). I think that most of the operations have been performed on late-deafened adults.

Parents we have met have mostly been quite happy with the result, though the performances vary greatly.

The parental-group in the Norwegian Deaf-society have put up warnings against cochlear-implants for small children, saying that this is very complicated operation and all the post-operational stuff does not produce results worth the efforts.

The operation is performed at the Rikshospitalet (A state-owned national Institution) and is free.

Last update date: 
2006 Jul 17