Last updated on Apr 11, 2018
Have you been delaying getting help with hearing loss because you are unsure about what your health insurance will cover? If so, you’re not the only one. Many people have untreated hearing problems because they do not understand their insurance coverage. It is important to figure out your plan because, if left untreated, hearing loss has an effect on both mental and physical health. Understanding your insurance policy can help you find unused coverage for your hearing health care.
Most people’s insurance is either paid for individually or through their employer. To find out if your plan covers hearing aids you need to look at your specific plan. Talk to either your insurance company or your employer about getting a brochure on your plan. Often these brochures are also available online. Inside there are specific words you can look for to help you determine what kind of coverage you have.
When locating what your insurance will cover it can be difficult to find what you are looking for if you don’t know the terms insurance companies use to classify hearing aids and hearing aid services. Some of the words you want to look for are:
If you’ve looked through all of these words and still can’t find what you are looking for, try looking under umbrella terms like “Other Medically Necessary Services” or “Medically Necessary Therapies.” Finally, remember there is a difference between someone who is born with hearing loss or gradually loses their hearing and someone who loses their hearing due to injury or accident. Usually, injuries lead to more flexibility and more comprehensive coverage.
Just because an insurance company claims to cover 100 percent of hearing aid healthcare costs does not mean their aren’t hidden limitations. Talking to an audiologist can help the average consumer better understand these limitations. When you talk to your insurance company, be sure to ask if they cover the complete cost of all hearing aids or just the base/starting model hearing aids. This is important because hearing loss is specific to each individual and not every hearing aid is right for everyone. If you need a more advanced hearing aid, your health insurance may only cover the cost of the base model, leaving you to pay the rest.
Don’t let a lack of information stop you from getting help with your hearing. Finding out what your health insurance with cover is a great first step in getting a hearing aid. Don’t delay, find out about your specific insurance plan as soon as you can.