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Does Health Insurance Cover Hearing Aids?

More than two in ten Americans suffer from some form of hearing loss. Yet, the cost of hearing aids can pose a major hindrance. We tell you how health insurance can come to your rescue.
Does Health Insurance Cover Hearing Aids?
Health plans usually don't pay for hearing devices, as they're categorized as durable medical equipment. Yet, such devices may be covered depending on your insurance company and policy specifics. We give you the details.
In this article

Hearing loss is a surprisingly common condition affecting a large number of Americans. According to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, nearly 23% of individuals older than 12 years and up to three-fourths of adults aged 70 and above experience some degree of hearing loss. Hearing aids can be a blessing, but the cost of these machines are a major hindrance.

Yet, insurance companies cover costs related to hearing aids, considering how many people suffer from this condition. This blog post will examine health insurance and complications concerning hearing aids so you can make an informed choice. Does health insurance cover hearing aids? Read to know more.

Does Health Insurance Cover Hearing Aids?

Health plans usually don’t pay for hearing devices, as they’re categorized as durable medical equipment. Nonetheless, such devices may be covered depending on your insurance company and policy specifics.

Do Medicare and Medicaid Cover Hearing Aids?

Medicare and Medicaid are two government-funded health insurance programs that have essential roles in providing healthcare coverage to eligible persons but provide limited coverage for hearing aids.

Medicare Hearing Aid Coverage 

Unfortunately, Medicare (Part A and Part B) doesn’t pay for routine hearing exams or prescribe hearing aids. However, some Medicare Advantage plans, which may be called Part C, might include hearing aid benefits as an optional extra. It’s crucial to peruse each plan’s specifics to ascertain whether it includes the above item.

Medicaid Hearing Aid Coverage

State-specific differences exist in Medicaid policies regarding coverage of hearing aids. This means that while certain states extend the comprehensive provision of this assistive technology and related services, others may need to pay more attention to it. Individuals must consult their state’s Medicaid program to know about the available benefits.

Private Insurance Coverage for Hearing Aids

Traditional health insurance does not usually cover the cost of hearing aids. However, private insurance policies like employer-sponsored plans and individual marketplace plans can provide you with benefits for this device. Nevertheless, there is huge variation in the scope of coverage provided by different insurers. Here are some general points to consider:

Aetna

Some of Aetna’s policies cover hearing aids. Coverage details will vary depending on the specific plan or state regulations. Plan members should refer to their documents or call Aetna for more information.

Blue Cross Blue Shield

Some Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS) plans may include coverage for hearing aids, though terms differ from one plan to another and also by the state in which you live. Certain BCBS plans compensate for both the diagnosis of hearing problems and the purchase of hearing aids, while some provide discounts on acquisition costs if bought from particular providers.

Cigna

Cigna might incorporate hearing aid coverage into certain plans. People can access their policy documents to inquire about any matters concerning hearing aid insurance and its associated charges.

Humana

Some Humana plans may include coverage for hearing aids, while others may not. Some plans can include coverage for aural examinations and listening gadgets, and others offer rebates on such devices through certain providers. However, people should check their policies carefully or consult Humana for more clarification.

United Healthcare

Hearing aids might be covered by United Healthcare under select policies. The availability of coverages and benefits is subject to change, so individuals can read their contract papers or contact United Healthcare to acquire any information regarding a provision related to audiological equipment.

Conclusion

While some health insurance plans, including certain Medicare Advantage plans and select private insurance plans, may offer coverage for hearing aids, coverage can vary widely.

Individuals should carefully review their insurance plan documents or contact their insurance provider to understand the specifics of their coverage for hearing aids.

Exploring platforms such as Beem can provide further insights into affordable healthcare options, enabling individuals to make the most suitable choices for their needs.

FAQs

How do you get hearing aids when you can’t afford them?

Individuals who cannot afford hearing aids may explore alternative options, such as assistance programs offered by nonprofit organizations, financing options, or affordable hearing aid alternatives like over-the-counter devices or personal sound amplification products (PSAPs). Additionally, some audiologists and hearing aid providers offer payment plans or sliding-scale fees based on income.

Does United Healthcare cover anything on hearing aids?

United Healthcare may offer coverage for hearing aids under certain plans, but coverage options and benefits can vary. Members should refer to their plan documents or contact United Healthcare for information on hearing aid coverage, including any limitations, copayments, or preauthorization requirements.

Why are hearing aids not covered by insurance?

Insurance coverage for hearing aids varies due to factors such as plan type, state regulations, and insurance company policies. While some plans may offer coverage for hearing aids, others may not include them in their benefits package due to cost considerations or the classification of hearing aids as elective devices rather than essential medical equipment.

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Author

Picture of Raman Gujral

Raman Gujral

An achievement-oriented professional, Raman has 10+ years of experience in B2B SaaS and B2C products across Fintech, Telecom, Digital Media, Social Media and Logistics domains. Defining and communicating product vision and strategy, product roadmap development, product positioning, and data analysis, he is also an expert in health insurance and personal loans content.

Editor

This page is purely informational. Beem does not provide financial, legal or accounting advice. This article has been prepared for informational purposes only. It is not intended to provide financial, legal or accounting advice and should not be relied on for the same. Please consult your own financial, legal and accounting advisors before engaging in any transactions.

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