High-tech, custom-programmed hearing aids are now available at affordable prices – starting at just $649 each – to people enrolled in UnitedHealthcare vision benefit plans, including employer-sponsored and individual policies.
Hearing aids can often cost thousands of dollars, but UnitedHealthcare’s new discount program enables its vision plan participants to save hundreds of dollars on hearing aids by purchasing them for as low as $649 each*. The discount program already has been available to people enrolled in many UnitedHealthcare medical plans, including employer-sponsored, individual and Medicare Advantage plans, as well as Medicare Part D plans. Some UnitedHealthcare Medicare plan customers pay no out-of-pocket costs for the hearing aids.
The hearing aids are being provided through a collaboration with hi HealthInnovations, an Optum business and UnitedHealth Group (NYSE: UNH) company. Retail customers can also achieve significant savings through hi HealthInnovations, which sells high-tech, custom-programmed hearing aids priced between $749 to $949 each*. This compares to competitor prices for similar devices that average $2,000 to $4,000 each.
Hearing loss affects one in five Americans ages 12 and older, according to a 2011 study from Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. More than 85 percent of people who could benefit from using a hearing aid do not actually use them, often because of the high cost, so this discount program helps people access hearing aids that can improve their quality of life.UnitedHealthcare plan participants and consumers interested in purchasing a hearing aid should ask a health care provider, including primary care physicians, audiologists or hi HealthInnovations hearing professionals, for a hearing test. The test results (an audiogram) are submitted to hi HealthInnovations, which programs the hearing aids for each person’s specific hearing loss. Consumers can have the device sent directly to their residence or be fitted in-person. “Cost is a significant barrier for millions of Americans suffering from hearing loss, and this new discount will help make hearing aids more accessible and affordable for more people nationwide,” said Linda Chous, O.D., chief eye care officer, UnitedHealthcare Vision. “Hearing health plays a critical role in people’s overall health and well-being. Untreated hearing loss can affect a person’s ability to stay connected to friends and family, contributing to social isolation, depression and lower income.”