Among the handful of deaf doctors to have worked at the institution, Dr Heng is particularly drawn to addressing communication challenges the deaf and the hard-of-hearing face in healthcare. He also hopes to break down doctor-patient communication barriers when addressing sensitive topics, such as a cancer diagnosis. “I’ve never taken hearing and the gift of spoken language for granted. (Being born with a hearing impairment) has given me a different perspective of patient needs and helped me better understand the communication barriers they face. Ultimately, every patient wants to be heard,” he said in an interview ahead of World Hearing Day on March 3.