Lions Healthy Hearing Outback

Rural communities are more affected

Did you know up to 9 in 10 Aboriginal children in remote areas experience serious middle ear infections that can cause hearing loss?

Keeping Storytelling Alive

Ear Science has been delivering the Lions Healthy Hearing Outback program for the Nyiyaparli and Martu people in the East Pilbara region of Western Australia since 2014. In partnership with the Puntukurnu Aboriginal Medical Service (PAMS) and funded by Rural Health West*, the program provides Audiology and ENT consultation, as well as upskilling of local health staff and community members.

Community members benefit from seeing our specialist clinical team, who provide tertiary ear and hearing care to children and adults. This means we can examine, diagnose, treat and refer for surgery, on country, all in one visit.

We offer services in:

  • Newman
  • Jigalong
  • Parnngurr
  • Punmu
  • Kunawarritji

In early 2023, Mineral Resources (MinRes) pledged their support to the Lions Healthy Hearing Outback program, committing $600,000 over 3 years, to bolster the resourcing of this program.

The three-year funding commitment from MinRes is strengthening the Lions Healthy Heairng Outback program. In March 2023, Ear Science Institute Australia appointed an Ear Health Coordinator to champion on-the-ground logistical support for patients that need treatment or surgery. MinRes’ support will also help deliver a new integrated service model that combines ear, nose and throat services via telehealth (TeleENT) with on-the-ground resources. Thanks to the support of MinRes, a leading diversified resources company that supports the communities in which it operates, this specialist ear care will be more accessible than before!

Ear disease is deemed endemic within First Nations communities and is a silent factor contributing to poor educational, social and employment outcomes. Closing the inequity gap by preventing and curing ear disease is a high priority at Ear Science Institute Australia. If you can’t hear, you can’t learn. In addition to our direct outreach service, Ear Science is also looking to research and other innovative approaches to tackle this challenge.

Hearing loss closely linked to dementia and the potential devastating loss of Australian indigenous culture

Researchers at Ear Science have been working on new ways to help treat conditions like otitis media. One such innovation is ClearDrum©, an almost invisible ear implant, which is set to revolutionise the way eardrums are repaired by combining silk worms and science to heal burst eardrums experienced by millions of people around the world, including the children in remote Aboriginal communities who suffer from chronic middle ear disease.


* The Lions Healthy Hearing Outback program is made possible by Rural Health West’s Outreach program, which is funded by the Australian Government Department of Health.

Kunjunyu Kurlka “Healthy Ears” event Newman

We recently partnered with Puntukurnu Aboriginal Medical Service (PAMS), Mineral Resources and the Shire of East Pilbara to host an East Newman community event, Kunyjunyu Kurlka, “Healthy Ears”. We were joined by Hearing Australia, Earbus and Hope Community Services to promote ear health through games and activities. The event was attended by about 50 locals who enjoyed a generous BBQ dinner cooked by the Iron Valley site team from Mineral Resources.