Hearing loss is one of the most prevalent health issues, but it remains to be one of the most misunderstood, as it is ‘invisible’ to most individuals. Only the individual who suffers from it and close friends and family members can actually understand the true impact it has on the lives of people with hearing loss.  

According to a study, about 80 percent of people who need hearing aids do not get them. There are several reasons that contribute to their inability to procure hearing aids, but the cost is one of the most prevalent reasons.  

Hearing aids are quite expensive with prices starting from $1600 of low-end devices and going up to $3500 for a high-end one. Similarly, the costs of batteries, supplies are also high and they need to be replaced often. However, with hearing aids being so expensive, there are few insurance and financing options that patients can revert to.

Insurance coverage

Currently, about 20 states mandate health insurers to fully or partially cover hearing aids for children. Yet, only three locations (Arkansas, Rhode Island and New Hampshire) require coverage for adults.   

However, there are a few health insurance companies that do provide coverage for hearing aids. In order to find out whether your insurance company is among them, you need to call the helpline and inquire about any such program that covers the costs of hearing loss.  

Insurance companies have different health plans which can cover the costs of hearing loss. In addition, there are some insurance companies that provide you with an allowance for hearing costs if you use their contracted providers, meaning they will pay a specified amount while you have to pay the rest. Insurance companies also provide discounts or co-pays whereby they pay a percentage of the cost while you pay the remaining amount.  

How does it work?

Insurance coverage and the claim systems in place often change from time to time. This is why it is necessary that you seek information before buying a health plan. You should seek information regarding the type of health plan, i.e. whether the plan gives allowance or discounts and what is the procedure of getting the coverage. Some insurance companies co-pay at the time of payment as well while others require you to pay the full amount and file the necessary papers to claim the insurance amount. Similarly, some insurance companies have health plans for hearing impairment of certain degree too. Be sure to check which coverage you might be entitled to.  

Even if you are in the states that mandate the insurance of hearing health, there are several employers such as teacher retirement groups and city or state government groups that provide health insurance that includes hearing aids. Be sure to seek help from your employer or benefits coordinator. However, it is recommended that you call the insurance provider directly and ask.