In South Africa approximately 10% of the population has significant hearing loss, but only about 2% seek treatment. Many would benefit from hearing aids, but only one in four people use them. A big barrier could be the high cost of hearing aids. In this blog we want to unpack how this barrier can be broken through.
Hearing aid costs
Hearing aids can be worn in or behind the ear. Whether you can easily afford them or not, hearing aids can be expensive depending on how advanced your hearing problem is. Hearing aids vary significantly in cost, but this doesn’t always reflect their overall effectiveness. The old methodology comes into play of what works for one person may not work for another. In some cases, more expensive hearing aids may come with high-end features, such as Bluetooth wireless connectivity or tinnitus masking.
Types of hearing aids
There are several different styles:
- behind-the-ear hearing aids (BTE)
- in-the-ear hearing aids (ITE)
- in-the-canal hearing aids (ITC)
- completely in canal hearing aids (CIC)
No matter how they’re worn, each style has the same basic parts and works in a similar way, but the price of course differs.
Why do hearing aids cost so much?
There are many factors that come into play with regards to the cost of hearing aids. And we want to share some of these with you:
- Lack of medical aid support
- Improved innovations in technology, but not reduced consumer costs
- Bundling of costs associated with hearing aids
Does insurance or medical aid cover hearing aids?
Hearing aids are generally covered by most medical aids in South Africa, although benefits differ depending on your medical aid and the benefit plan you are prescribed to. Hearing aids are often covered from a separate “appliances” fund, whilst others use the benefit from the savings.
Is there financing for hearing aids?
A patient can either purchase a hearing aid and pay upfront or take the hearing aid on “contract” just like a cellphone contract. You can also use your medical aid benefit to purchase one hearing aid and then finance the other, thereby allowing you to get the right level of technology that your audiologist is recommending, and you need. We at Strauss Audiology can guide you on what to do with possibly getting your hearing aids financed.
About Strauss Audiology
Strauss Audiology is a professional audiology business in the northern suburbs of Cape Town, offering expert, effective hearing advice that is tailored to clients’ unique hearing needs. We conduct hearing evaluations, hearing tests and vertigo assessments, and provide a range of solutions to improve and protect clients’ hearing. This includes providing hearing aids to Cape Town clients. With 13 years of experience, and with the qualifications and certifications to deliver leading hearing care, you can trust us to take care of your hearing needs.
Want your hearing tested? Need a solution for hearing loss?