The Hong Kong Society for the Deaf
The Hong Kong Society for the Deaf

Information for Hearing Impaired Person

General Information

  • In order to ensure that disabled persons enjoy the same freedom and rights, several legislations are implemented and the main ones are introduced below:
  • The Disability Discrimination Ordinance
  • The Ordinance is set up to protect persons with disabilities (including hearing impaired individuals) to enjoy access to equal opportunities and to integrate into the society. The Ordinance protects hearing impaired individuals and their associates from discrimination, harassments and vilification in the following aspects:

    • Work (including from recruitment to during work period)
    • Employment (including partnerships, trade unions memberships and vocational trainings etc)
    • Education
    • Access to, handling and management of premises
    • Provision of goods, services and facilities
    • Registration as a Barrister
    • Access to clubs and sporting activities
    • Exercise power of the government and perform their duties
    • If individuals feel that they are being discriminated due to hearing impairment, one or more of the following actions could be taken:
    • If it is related to work, one could lodge a complaint to the management of the organization;
    • If it is related to service or facilities provision, one could lodge a complaint to the provider;
    • To seek help from the Equal Opportunities Commission, the Commission has established a mechanism for handling and accepting complaints, performing investigations to assist in reconciliation, as well as offering legal advice or aid if necessary;
    • Legal court proceedings.

    For more information, please visit the website of the Equal Opportunities Commission

  • Inland Revenue Ordinance Cap.112
  • If an individual taxpayer has a disabled dependent, he or she could apply for the disabled dependent allowance according to this ordinance. Please contact the Inland Revenue Department for details on the allowance.

    For more information, please visit the website of the Inland Revenue Department

  • Occupational Deafness (Compensation) Ordinance
  • According to the Ordinance, the claimant must fulfill both the occupational and disability requirements in order to receive the compensation.

    Any individual who has been given compensation for occupational deafness may apply for further compensation if he/she continues to be in specified employment under a noisy environment in Hong Kong, and which leads to the individual suffering from greater degree of hearing loss and additional extent of permanent incapacity.

    For eligibility, procedures and calculation of compensation, please visit the website of the Occupational Deafness Compensation Board

  • Regulations regarding TV subtitles by Communications Authority
  • As hearing impaired persons rely heavily on visual components to receive external information from the media, there is a significant demand for subtitles in TV programmes. According to the Communications Authority, regulations are as follows:

    Since 1st December 2003, free television channels which offer Cantonese programmes shall provide Chinese subtitles for the following programmes:

    • All news reporting, current affairs programme, weather forecast and emergency notice
    • All programmes to be broadcasted between 7pm-11pm (unless there is technical restriction for the provision of subtitles, such as in live or satellite broadcast)
    • From 1st December 2004, English TV channels shall provide subtitles for all news reporting, weather forecast, current affairs programmes and emergency notice. In addition, English subtitles shall be provided for 2 hours per week in educational English programmes targeted to adolescents.
    • Our Society also established a Concern Group on Subtitle Provision in order to monitor and provide recommendations on the matter.

Emergency Service

  • 992 Emergency SMS Service
  • In the past, the speech and/or hearing impaired could seek help from the police by reporting to the 992 Fax Emergency Hotline. With the use of SMS becoming increasingly popular, various organizations concerned with the welfare of the hearing impaired advocated that the Police Force establish an SMS emergency hotline. The recommendation was later funded by the HKSAR government and supported by telecom companies and finally began its operation in Oct, 2004.。

    For more information, please visit the website of the Hong Kong Police Force

  • Registration of Outbound Travel Information (HKSAR)
  • Before you travel outside Hong Kong, you can register your contact details and itineraries using this online service. In case of an emergency overseas, the “Assistance to Hong Kong Residents Unit of the Hong Kong Immigration Department” can contact and offer help to you.

    For more information, please visit the website of Gov HK

  • “Personal Emergency Link Service” Installation Scheme
  • The scheme is jointly operated by the Senior Citizen Home Safety Association and the Hong Kong Society for the Deaf.

    Eligibility and application process
    In case of emergency, the “Personal Emergency Link Service” (PE Link) can offer help to you. Tailored PE Link service for hearing impaired individuals is now available for application.

    “Indoor PE Link” Service

    Bell rental plus monthly charge Deposit Contract period
    (1 bell +2 remote controls)
    (Service charge for first 4 months
    6 months
    *A stable residential home line is required

    e-Care Link App

    Monthly charge Contract Period
    $168 12month
    *Specified models of smartphone (Android 4.0 or above), iOS 7.1 or above (except iOS 11.0), Bluetooth (2.0 or above) and use of mobile data are required.

    Care-on-Call service

    Phone Price Deposit Contract Period
    $800 $138 12months
    *The plan includes unlimited minutes for local calls, phone transfers, conference calls, showing incoming calls, calls on hold, message box and 10,000 SMS within the network.

    Eligibility criteria:

    1. Persons in need in the community without age limit, along with the following criteria:
    2. Persons with chronic illness or disabled persons; and Do not meet the eligibility for subsidy from Social Welfare Department, Housing Department or the Hong Kong Housing Society etc. for PE Link service;
    3. Could not afford the service charge of PE Link due to financial burden.


    The current income and asset limits for applying to our charity funding are as follows:

    Monthly total income Asset limits
    Single $7,970 $246,500
    Couple $13,050 $373,500
    *Preference will be given to public housing tenants
    *The Association reserves the rights of final judgment

    To provide your identity documents
    Staff will ask applicants or referral organizations to provide the following documents’ copies for assessments, including asset statements:

    1. CSSA Recipient: Notification of Successful Application/Notification of Revision of Assistance
    2. Non-CSSA Recipient: Statements of applicant and spouse (if applicable) on savings, deposits, stocks and foreign currencies for the past 6 months (with name and account number printed)

    *In the assessment process, our staff will also look at the financial situation of relatives, living together or not, to confirm whether they can support the applicant in applying for the PE Link Service.

    Terms and Conditions:

    1. Our Society reserves the rights of final decisions for the scheme;
    2. Individuals who are successfully exempt from the service charge may be interviewed by donors, newspapers or magazines on the funding and our services;
    3. Our Society has the right to decide extension or termination of exemption, or the period of sponsorship, or to refer the individual to other subsidy organizations based on the situation of our funding as well as the recent situation of the individual;
    4. Please complete the form and submit relevant documents accordingly, otherwise the application and assessment process may be delayed;
    5. Based on the Privacy Ordinance, applicants must sign the declaration in the application form, otherwise our Society could not process any charity funding application or assessment;
    6. Our staff will pay a home visit if necessary to make assessments and checks in order to understand the applicant’s situation in detail.

Public Service

  • Public Transport Fare Concession Scheme
  • Elderly and eligible persons with disabilities could enjoy a concessionary fare of $2 in specified public transport mode and services. It is aimed at encouraging the beneficiaries to integrate into the society and building an inclusive society.

    For more information, please refer to the website of the Transport Department

  • Concessionary Tariff Schemes (HK Electric)
  • Applicants must fulfill the criteria stated below:

    • Being registered residential customers of HK Electric;
    • Applicant or any one of the family members is receiving disability supplement of Comprehensive Social Security Assistance (CSSA); or
    • Applicants or any one of the family members are receiving disability allowance and eligible to receive CSSA.


    For more information, please refer to the website of HK Electric

  • Phone Appointment Service of General Out-patient Clinics
  • The service provides a 24-hour appointment service through 800 telephone lines, citizens can call to make their clinic appointment for the next 24 hours.

    For more information, please visit the website of the Hospital Authority

  • SMS Booking Service of General Out-patient Clinics
  • In response to the needs of hearing impaired patients, the Hospital Authority (HA) has implemented the SMS Booking Service in General Out-patient Clinics. This service is provided to hearing impaired patients and operated by a computer system. Registered patients can send a SMS to selected clinics to make a booking. Patients will be asked to follow the procedures and enter relevant information in order to make their clinic appointment for the next 24 hours. The procedures are similar to that of telephone booking and quota is assigned with the same probability.

    For more information, please visit the website of the Hospital Authority

Daily Life

  • Installation of flashing doorbell for the hearing impaired
  • As hearing impaired persons could not hear the sound of the doorbell, it could cause inconvenience to visiting relatives or friends as well as potential danger during an emergency. If you have experienced similar incidents, you may consider installing a flashing doorbell in order to enhance your communications with the others.

    • Tenants of Public Housing
    • Hearing impaired persons legally renting and residing in public housing could contact our social workers of the Counselling Centre. They will assist in referring you to the Housing Authority for free-of-charge installation.

    • Individuals not renting Public Housing (e.g. living in self-owned public housing, Home Ownership Scheme members or living in private housing)
      • Elderly CSSA recipients or elderly with financial burden:
      • The case will be referred to St. James’ Settlement for further asset checks, if successful, material and installation fee will be waived. Please note St. James’ Settlement reserves the right of final decisions.

      • Other hearing impaired persons:
      • You can purchase flashing doorbells directly from St. James’ Settlement. Our social workers could refer your case to Caritas Sham Shui Po residents' mutual-help maintenance team for them to assist in installation for $200 each. If you are not an elderly person but with financial difficulties, we could help applying for waiving the installation fee.

      Please call 2711 1974 or fax to 2760 9442 to make an appointment to handle the application with our social workers at the Counselling Centre.

      Application Procedures:

  • Application for Approval Letter for Hearing Impaired Drivers
  • The Transport Department has issued the following notice on Driving Assessment and Driving License for hearing impaired persons :

    Disabled persons (e.g. deaf, physical disability in limbs, or with mobility problems), or persons with the need of wearing hearing aids while driving can only apply for driving assessment after doctor’s recommendation and passing our test satisfactorily. If there is any query, please contact the Driving Test Unit by calling 2713 7262.

    (Template for Approval Letter issued by the Transport Department))

    The Transport Department

    Ref. No.: XXX


    Approval Letter

    If you fulfill relevant requirements, we do not object to your application or participation in Driving Assessment for Private Car (Code 1), Light Goods Vehicle (Code 2), MotorCycle (Code 3) and Motor Tricycle (Code 22). Please note that you must wear a hearing aid while driving.

    Please keep this letter for future reference and communication with us.

    Commissioner for Transport


    Individual Application:
    Hearing impaired persons should first call the Driving Test Unit (Tel: 2713 7262) to arrange an appointment. On the day of assessment, applicants must bring along their Medical Certificate to the initial assessment at the Driving Services Section, Pui Ching Road, Homantin. After the assessment, you should bring along the approval letter to the Licensing Office for application.

    For more information, please visit the website of the Transport Department

    Application through our Society:
    Have you tried scheduling a Driving Test but you were asked to provide an Approval Letter for Driving for hearing imapired persons? Do you feel anxious about applying for the Letter? Our Audiology Centre and Social Workers are here to help:

    1. Schedule an appointment for auditory assessment at our Tseung Kwan O Centre.
    2. On the date of appointment, you will undergo an assessment at our Audiology Centre. Our staff will assess whether your hearing aids are appropriate for driving purposes. If your hearing aids are considered not adequate for driving, you would need to purchase a new hearing aid.
    3. Our audiologists will prepare an auditory report for you, the report will be signed by both the audiologist and ENT doctor before sending it to our Counselling Unit.
    4. Once our social workers receive the auditory report, they will contact the Driving Test Unit of the Transport Department to schedule an appointment for the applicant to meet with the Transport Officer.
    5. Social workers will schedule an appointment with the applicant to go through the process of meeting the Transport Officer, to relieve the anxiety of the applicant.
    6. Social workers will meet the Transport Officer along with the applicant, and will assist in communication between the two parties. The Transport Officer will announce whether the Approval Letter will be issued. (See Template)
    7. Approval Letter will be received within 3-4 weeks.
    8. Applicants can bring along the Approval Letter to the Transport Department for scheduling the written test and road test.
    9. If there is any query about Approval Letter or Driving, please feel free to contact our counsellors. (Tel:2711 1974,Fax: 2761 4390).

    Applications through our Society:

  • Sign Language Interpretation Service of Legislative Council meetings
  • Since 2010, Legislative Council meetings have been accompanied by simultaneous. Sign Language interpretation. Hearing impaired persons could view live broadcasts or search for past meeting records in the link below.

    Live Broadcasting of Legislative Council meetings:

  • Financial Support
  • Occupational Deafness Compensation

    Our Society’s Development Fund and Scholarship for the hearing impaired


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