Does Medicare pay for hearing aids?

Does Medicare pay for hearing aids? 

Hearing loss is a common problem, affecting about 1 in 3 people over age 65 and nearly half of those over 75. It can be caused by aging, genetics or exposure to loud noise.

If you’re having trouble hearing what others are saying, you may need help from an audiologist. But if your primary health insurance plan doesn’t cover hearing aids (like Medicare Advantage plans), it’s hard to know whether it makes sense for you to spend several thousand dollars on them out-of-pocket. 

Medicare covers those who are 65 or older, as well as younger people with disabilities or serious diseases. You will have to make sure you know everything about what is covered and how much it costs before signing up for the coverage.

We’ve done all the research so that we can tell you exactly how much Medicare pays for hearing loss treatment—and why these costs vary so much across different regions of America.

 

Does Medicare pay for hearing aids?

Hearing loss is a serious condition that affects your ability to communicate and enjoy life. It can impact your relationships, career, and independence.

Medicare doesn’t cover hearing aids or exams for fitting them. But there are other options to help you hear better without breaking the bank.

Ontario Hearing Center in Rochester NY aims to help make it easy for you to get started on your path towards better hearing today – without going broke.

 

Medicare and Hearing Aids

On the website of Medicare it says that – 

“Medicare doesn’t cover hearing aids or exams for fitting hearing aids. You pay 100% for hearing aids and exams. Some Medicare Advantage Plans (Part C) offer extra benefits that Original Medicare doesn’t cover – like vision, hearing, or dental. Contact the plan for more information.”

 

Get your hearing tested

Some people tend to neglect their hearing because they don’t think it’s important but in the end, they end up losing out on all the opportunities that come with good hearing. 

There are a variety of costs associated with not taking care of yourself and one way is by not getting tested for your hearing. Hearing loss can lead to loneliness, isolation and social withdrawal. It’s just not worth ignoring.

Even though it may seem like a sign of aging, you should not be afraid to get your hearing tested as it could also affect your mental health. People who have lost their hearing can experience loneliness and depression which is why it’s so important to work with an audiologist and explore different options to get you back on track.

 

Over-the-counter hearing aids

These new hearing aids will allow people with mild to moderate hearing loss to make up for some of the sounds that they miss out on. They are not only less expensive, but also more convenient because you can buy them over-the-counter and wear them without a doctor’s prescription.

In recent years, due to the rise of hearing loss, more people have been turning to personal sound amplification products (PSAP) as an alternative. This product is available in a wide range of prices—from $20-$3000. However, not all PSAPS are created equal and it’s important that you purchase one from a reputable source. When considering PSAPs, it needs to be: (1) comfortable; (2) durable; and (3) affordable.

Some people who need hearing aids but cannot afford them may also try personal sound amplifiers instead because they generally cost less than traditional hearing aids. However, it is worth noting that PSAPs and OTC hearing aids do not last as long or produce the same sound quality.

As practicing audiologists, we still go for the traditional way of fitting hearing aids – and that is by going through a hearing test and being fitted by an audiologist.

 

Does Medicare pay for hearing tests?

This is not applicable to all hearing tests, so don’t get your hopes up, but in some cases, Medicare can shoulder hearing tests. This usually happens when your primary care doctor or physician recommends you to get a hearing test – in short, you need to get a recommendation.

You just can’t walk into a hearing clinic without a referral and get a free hearing test ℅ Medicare. That’s not the right process.

Again, Medicare only covers diagnostic hearing tests and balance exams if recommended by a healthcare provider. You pay for the 20% Medicare-approved amount for the doctor’s services under covered exams while the Part B deductible applies.

For more information about Medicare and hearing tests, you may also check their official website.

 

Why doesn’t Medicare cover hearing care?

The Medicare Act excludes hearing aids because of their low cost, and the fact that it was not expected that seniors would live as long as they do now. The Medicare act also didn’t anticipate an increase in the incidence of age-related hearing loss among seniors.

Hearing aids have been on the market for decades, and yet they are still not covered by Medicare. This is because in 1965, when the act was created, hearing aids were considered “low-cost” or even “routinely needed.” The population of seniors back then wasn’t as large and most people did not live to their full lifespans. 

However, today’s seniors are living longer than ever before. Additionally, many other countries such as Canada provide coverage for them through healthcare plans. It is imperative that Medicare be updated to reflect this change so that those who need these devices can continue enjoying life without having to worry about going broke or risking losing their home due to medical bills.

 

Will coverage on hearing aids change? 

The implementation of a universal health care system would provide many benefits to those in need. One such benefit is the inclusion of dental, vision and hearing care into Medicare coverage so that people can be provided with the medical attention required to maintain optimum quality of life. 

Following the introduction of a bill that would require Medicare to pay for certain audiological services, the public is hoping for a positive turnout. However, the proposed legislation was introduced just recently and will take time to be passed.

 

Why Hearing Loss Should Not Be Ignored

Hearing loss in adults can cause problems with interpersonal relationships, but when hearing aids are used, it’s possible for these relationships to flourish. 

It is a well-known fact that strong human connections improve health and reduce mortality rates. When you’re unable to hear others’ voices as clearly, interactions may be strained or misinterpreted – which could lead to unhappiness on the part of both parties and an unbalanced social life. The solution? Hearing aids! They allow wearers to communicate more easily with friends and family members – strengthening existing relationships while building new ones.

The Harvard University study shows that strong human relationships are the best predictor for health and longevity, so when you lose your hearing, or if you have a loved one who has lost their hearing, be sure to get them a set of modern-day hearing aids. 

In fact, research has shown people with mild -to-moderate age related loss of hearing can still enjoy the sounds of life and live much longer than those without any hearing ability. Hearing loss is often missed as an early sign of other medical conditions like heart disease or diabetes which can cause serious long term health problems. Modern day digital technologies mean most types of hearing loss can be successfully managed through amplification; there are also more discreet styles available for less conspicuous use in public areas.

Hearing loss can be a difficult disability to deal with. After being diagnosed, people may worry about what they need to do and how much it will cost them if they want to improve their hearing. But don’t fret! There are many options you can explore when considering the purchase of a hearing aid such as:

   •   Personal loans

   •   Interest free financing

   •   Government assistance programs 

   •   Insurance coverage 

 

If you are afflicted with hearing loss and you’re low on budget, there may be free or low-cost options available at public health clinics. Private insurance providers will assist those who provide coverage for this type of equipment as well. You can also consider applying for financial assistance from organizations like which offer grants and other types of aid to people in need.

If you’re unsure about which type of program is best for you, speak with an audiologist or your healthcare provider today. If you’re in Rochester, New York, our staff at Ontario Hearing Center can help you from hearing assessment  to hearing aid adjustments.

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