Direct To Consumer Hearing Service

  • 2023

  • Social Impact

Designed By:

Commissioned By:

Hearing Australia

Designed In:


The Direct To Consumer (DTC) Hearing Service provides an easy and convenient way for people with hearing concerns to understand their hearing, receive recommendations for solutions and purchase and try solutions to improve their hearing.

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  • The only way Australians can currently receive hearing care or solutions is to attend an appointment in a hearing centre. Currently, 60% of clients diagnosed with a hearing loss leave their appointment without a solution. Recent changes in FDA legislation in the US have approved the sale of Over the Counter (OTC) hearing solutions that don't need a prescription. Although this will make it easier to access solutions once approved in Australia, without a prescription or expert advice, people with hearing loss still require help to the best solution for their needs.

  • Developing a new pathway that contradicts traditional models of care required an open minded and explorative approach. A small, multi-disciplinary team used human-centred design and agile frameworks to discover, design, built, test and iterate a range of options with real customers over 8 months. As most customers still rely heavily on face-to-face expert advice to find a hearing solution, the team used a variety of research techniques to validate that a small but viable market of customers were willing to try something new.

  • After only 1 month post launch over 5.5K visitors visited the Service and six purchased a hearing solution, confirming there is interest and an incremental market for this pathway. Multiple iterations throughout the process developed a range of learnings and a roadmap of opportunities to improve the Service in future. The Service makes hearing solutions more accessible to a broader range of the Australian population - such as those living in remote areas without easy access to a hearing centre. It also improves service cost and efficiency as clinicians can provide services from anywhere.

  • Making a decision about your health is an important one and one that many people require expert help to do. Several features were developed to provide guidance to users to improve decision making: 1) An Online Hearing Check to help users to see if hearing concerns are worth doing something about. The Hearing Check was clinically verified by National Acoustic Laboratories with people with different levels of hearing loss. 2) A Solution Finder to recommend hearing solutions that match user needs and preferences 3) Access to sales and expert telehealth support.