Facts About Hearing Aid Prices

While insurance typically covers cochlear implants, insurance does not typically cover hearing aid devices. For some individuals, the degree of hearing impairment makes hearing aids a necessity. For individuals with lesser hearing impairment, however, they may not perceive hearing aid use as a necessity but a luxury. In 1999 a survey by the National Council on the Aging indicated that 55 percent of the survey participants said high cost was a reason to avoid using hearing aids. Several factors influence hearing aid prices, which span a scope of several thousands of dollars.

  1. Facts

    • Hearing aids are expensive. The cost includes more than the physical device. It includes the cost of fitting, follow-ups, maintenance service, and consultations to ensure proper functioning of the equipment. Different types of hearing aids are available based on hearing-loss levels and individual needs.

    Reason for the High Cost

    • Several reasons lend to the high cost of hearing aids. Two primary factors include that an economy of scale is not applicable to hearing aids. Only about 2 percent of the population uses hearing aids. This is insufficient to provide a big enough demand to drive down costs. Another reason for high cost is the research and development costs of improving hearing aids to maximize their effectiveness in overcoming hearing loss.

    Average Cost

    • In 2003 the average cost of a hearing aid was $1,794, according the to 2004 Hearing Review dispenser survey. However, this was an average across all hearing aid types and technologies, so it is somewhat misleading in terms of its application to individual hearing aid requirements. Different types of hearing loss require differing hearing aid devices and technology, so a broad average does not provide a good benchmark for hearing aid prices.

    Price Ranges

    • Hearing Planet website gives a table of costs for well over 50 different brands and models of hearing aids. In 2009 the prices ranged from $1,599 to $3,299. However, other sources of a more narrative than tabular format cite prices for some hearing aids up to $6,000 or more, depending on the kinds of peripheral equipment added. An FM radio addition, for example, can raise the price into the $8,000 range.

    Acquisition of Hearing Aids

    • Prohibitive cost causes many people who could benefit from hearing aids to delay purchase or choose not to use a hearing aid at all. However, providers generally offer payment plans with little or no interest.

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