IM this article to a friend!

September 14, 2005

Cover hearing aids

From: Salt Lake Tribune, United States - Sep 14, 2005


The Disability Law Center writes in response to Lesley Mitchell's Aug. 30 article, "Private insurers, Medicare rarely cover hearing aids."

The DLC is troubled that the state's largest insurance companies admit that "hearing aids are generally not a covered benefit under any of the employer sponsored plans they administer." We think they should be covered.

It has been my experience that hearing technology, including hearing aids, is in demand by many Utahns who are hard of hearing or deaf.

Individuals should have a choice about what kind of hearing technology they have access to, and the choice should not be driven by restrictive insurance policies.

I'm fluent in American Sign Language and I choose to wear hearing aids. I do not want a cochlear implant. My hearing aids are not cosmetic, nor are they a convenience item.

They assist me in communicating in all areas of my life. But my health insurance policy excludes any coverage related to my hearing aids, which poses a significant financial burden to me and my family.

I view health insurance as a support, but when it comes to hearing technology it has always been a problem.

Lisa Knapton
Advocate, Disability Law Center
Salt Lake City

© Copyright 2005, The Salt Lake Tribune.