Audiologists may prescribe hearing aids for people with hearing loss conditions. Hearing loss patients may want to find out if they qualify for monetary assistance when seeking hearing healthcare. Well, the truth is that hearing aids are among the few essential medical devices that are not covered by insurance. Many private insurance companies don’t cover them.
The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) reports that 23 U.S. states require health insurance schemes to cover hearing devices – however, most of them only apply to children. A few states have made provisions to cover adults as well, with private insurance plans mainly covering the medical exam cost alone.
While hearing aids aren’t covered by medical insurance in general, some insurers may offer optional hearing, vision and dental plans with additional coverage for hearing tests and aid fittings.
Other funding options to pay for your hearing aids are financing from charitable organizations and credit from third parties such as CareCredit. It’s ideal to research all options to find the best solution for your hearing needs.
Insurance Coverage Varies by Plan
To figure out whether your health insurance can cover your hearing aids, you need to look at your plan. The majority of plans come with a toll-free number for beneficiaries on the insurance card. Your health plan may state a specified amount of money for the cost of the aids. This money could be spent on the entire hearing aid purchase, with the benefit being renewable after a few years.
The plan may also offer you an allowance for hearing aids if you buy them from a contracted vendor. The allowance could be subtracted from the total cost of the purchase. In some cases, health plans have discounts negotiated with the contracted provider. And that means you can only enjoy the discount if you buy your device from the specified provider.
Another fact is that every individual’s health plan may be different, so hearing aid coverage could vary from plan to plan geographically.
Medicare and Medicaid Coverage for Hearing Aids
Federal health insurance plans are not the best in the system. Many hearing aid providers do not accept Medicaid or Medicare because of the stressful paperwork and the low and slow reimbursement rate.
While Medicare doesn’t typically cover hearing aids, you could have options based on the kind of hearing loss problem and Medicare Advantage Plan you have. Medicaid coverage for U.S. adults with hearing loss also varies according to state eligibility and changes with time. You can always visit Medicaid’s official website for more information on insurance coverage for hearing aids.
Hearing Aid Financing
If you cannot get a third party to fund the costs of your hearing aids, you may want to look at other programs that can offer you short-term loans/payment plans. Discuss with your audiologists and consider CareCredit as a financing option. CareCredit has a patient system that works like a credit card, except that it’s exclusively meant for healthcare services.
This scheme is widely accepted by more than 75,000 providers across the hearing care, vision, dentistry and cosmetic surgery space. CareCredit offers monthly payment options with no upfront costs, annual fees and prepayment penalties to patients. The excellent news about CareCredit is that they also have short-term no-interest alongside long-term plans with fixed interests.
Does Advocacy Matter for Hearing Aid Coverage?
One possible reason for which insurance coverage for hearing aids isn’t comprehensive is that: historically, hearing loss has not been viewed as an issue with strong voices. Unlike depression and other mental health concerns, campaigns for coverage on hearing aids have not been discussed widely. It is thought that solid advocacy can play a role in revolutionizing the hearing aid healthcare industry for the better. The next few years could see transformation in the hearing aid and insurance landscape if more people begin to talk about them.
Audiologists at Natural Hearing Centers are there to attend to the needs of hearing aid patients like you. Irrespective of your condition and budget, you will find affordable hearing aid solutions to improve your hearing.
Contact Natural Hearing Centers today at (888) 221-9156.