The Ins and Outs of Hearing Aids

Is financial assistance available for a hearing aid?

Hearing aids are covered by some private insurance plans, employee/company plans, the Federal Employee Health Benefit Plan, and Tricare, the plan for active and retired military and their families. Some plans may cover hearing testing, but not the hearing aids.

For eligible children and young adults ages 21 and under, Medicaid will pay for the diagnosis and treatment of hearing loss (including hearing aids) under the Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnostic and Treatment (EPSDT) service. Children may also be covered by their state’s early intervention program or State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP).

Medicare does not cover hearing aids for adults; however, diagnostic evaluations are covered if they are ordered by a physician for the purpose of assisting the physician in developing a treatment plan. Since Medicare has declared the BAHA a prosthetic device and not a hearing aid, Medicare will cover the BAHA if other coverage policies are met.

Some nonprofit organizations provide financial assistance for hearing aids, while others may help provide used or refurbished aids.

The National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders’ (NIDCD’s) Information Clearinghouse has information about organizations that offer financial assistance for hearing aids. Or visit Hearing Loss financial help pages for other resources.

Where can I find more information?

NIDCD maintains a directory of organizations that can answer questions and provide printed or electronic information on hearing aids. Please see the list of organizations at www.nidcd.nih.gov/directory.

No one wants to use a hearing aid. You may even have a love/hate relationship with it, but, after a while, you will not want to be without it. Hearing aid(s) coupled with your willingness to tell others how to communicate with you is a winning combination and will get you back into the social scene.

Sources

National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders

Hearing Loss

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