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Why are hearing aids so expensive

solune (803114) writes | more than 2 years ago

7

solune writes "Ipad 2 or 3: $399 or $499

Dell laptop computer: around $600

Smartphone, non-subsidized: $200 — $800+

Not to mention all the T.V’s, game consoles, etc, all around sub $1k prices... ...yet, a decent hearing aid for my mom will go upwards of $3000! WTF?

Excuse me if I sound a little pissed, but it seems to me with the shrinking electronics, better capabilities, and technological advancements, not to mention the rapidly increasing potential user base, quality hearing aids should be coming in a *lot* cheaper than what we can find.

Adding fuel to my fire is the fact, a hearing aid will greatly improve my mom’s—not to mention millions of others out there—life a lot more. Currently she suffers from frustration and isolation with having to ask people to “speak up”, and nodding her head to things her kids and grandkids say.

We’ve tried the cheapies, and they’re fraught with problems.

So, can someone tell me why a hearing aid should be so expensive?"

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7 comments

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why not use a headphone Amp. (1)

SteveWP (1845840) | more than 2 years ago | (#40304109)

cheap earbud's. 8$ or go nut's the sky is the limit when it comes to headphone prices. Headphone amp diy or pro model. $0 - $500.00+ cheap microphone or fancy tiny one , I don't know how much these are approximately. Most headphone amp's use standard rechargeable batteries so even there you would save money and you would get at least a day's worth of charge or more out of the device. Going old school like this for hearing aid may also improve her quality of life by making it possible to listen to any other devices that use a standard headphone jack, a simple inexpensive mp3 player would allow this elderly person to enjoy music or audiobooks. Or if the eye's are still good plug it in to a tablet so she can enjoy movies etc.

Re:why not use a headphone Amp. (1)

SteveWP (1845840) | more than 2 years ago | (#40304149)

Check out http://www.head-fi.org/ [head-fi.org] lot's of good info and reviews on amps.

Re:why not use a headphone Amp. (2)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | more than 2 years ago | (#40304511)

Because hearing-aids don't work like that. They have have a specific equalization - tuned to the individual patient in even the half-way decent ones. Without a reasonable equalization, the frequencies that the person can still hear will be over-amplified, possibly even painfully so, just to get the remaining frequencies up to something passable.

Re:why not use a headphone Amp. (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 2 years ago | (#40309273)

It shouldn't cost over a hundred bucks for bluetooth earpieces and an equalizer/amplifier that she could tune herself.

Reason they're so expensive: (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40304549)

Because Medicare will pay for them.

Reasons they are so expencive (1)

JohnVanVliet (945577) | more than 2 years ago | (#40305861)

well you can thank the USPTO for that
and Congress for there lack of use to the 99%
and Congress's bowing down to the 0.1%
-- hail the 0.1 % , hail Caesar --

re. (1)

kevivin (2661591) | more than 2 years ago | (#40318695)

it's easy to understand. 1,because of the limited sale, no factory in this business will produce it massively which makes the cost unacceptable. 2the hearing aid is not indispensable for the old because the hearing problem is not as threathening as other diseses like heart attack. It aims to iompove the quality of life. So the optional equipement is mostly designed for the well-off pepole.
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