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CRE-ICHEAR Joins the WHO World Hearing Forum

Date posted: 21st of October 2019

The Secretariat of the World Hearing Forum has welcomed the Centre of Research Excellence in Ear and Hearing Health of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children (CRE-ICHEAR) as a member of the Forum.

The WHO World Hearing Forum envisions a world in which no person experiences hearing loss due to preventable causes and those with hearing loss can achieve their full potential through rehabilitation, education and empowerment.

The goal of the Forum is to facilitate the implementation of the WHA70.13 resolution on 'Prevention of deafness and hearing loss' and support WHO's advocacy actions in the field of hearing.

The objectives of the Forum are to:

  • undertake advocacy efforts for galvanising support and raise awareness for ear and hearing care; and
  • promote networking for knowledge sharing.

Associate Professor Kelvin Kong BSc, MBBS(UNSW), FRACS will represent the CRE-ICHEAR at the World Hearing Forum opening Membership Assembly at the World Health Organisation headquarters in Geneva this December, 2019.

Associate Professor Kelvin Kong with Aboriginal family in his clinicKelvin qualified as the first Aboriginal Fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (RACS), specialising in Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery.

Kelvin hails from the Worimi people of Port Stephens, north of Newcastle, NSW, Australia.

He completed his Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery at the University of NSW in 1999. He embarked on his internship at St. Vincent's Hospital in Darlinghurst and pursued a surgical career, completing resident medical officer and registrar positions at various Hospitals. Along the way, his has been privileged in serving the urban, rural and remote community. He has also been humbled to partake in many committee and board roles with Royal Australasian College of Surgery (RACS), Australian Hearing (AH), NHMRC, Australian Indigenous Doctors Association (AIDA), National Centre for Indigenous Excellence (NCIE) and many hospital initiatives.

He is now practising in Newcastle (Awabakal Country) as a qualified Surgeon specializing in Paediatric & Adult Otolaryngology, Head & Neck Surgery (Ear, Nose & Throat Surgery). He has a very diverse practice in ear, nose and throat surgery, initiating community clinics, primary health care, outreach and a private practice. His practice offers a full range of services in the discipline of ENT surgery and enjoys surgery ranging from cochlear implantation, through to airway reconstruction. 

Complementing his surgical training, he is kept grounded by his family, who are the strength and inspiration to him. He greatest achievement to date is his family, which includes Kiara and their two beautiful children.

As members of the World Hearing Forum, the CRE-ICHEAR joins a vast global network of like-minded stakeholders working to address and advocate in the field of ear and hearing health. Only by working together will we be able to overcome the challenges of preventable hearing loss that currently affect more than 34 million children world wide.


Due to unexpected personal circumstances, Associate Professor Kelvin Kong was unable to attend the World Hearing Forum Opening Membership Assembly in Geneva. Thankfully, Dr Hasantha Gunasekera and Ms Sandra Nelson attended the forum in Kelvin's place.

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