Dr. Clifford Olson from Applied Hearing Solutions in Anthem Arizona discusses the 5 reasons why hearing aids are so expensive.
Reason #1 – Research & Development. Millions of dollars are spent each year on the R&D associated with hearing aids. Hearing aids didn’t become so small just by calling China and requesting a reduction in size. It takes time and money to develop products that have all of the same, and newer, features inside of a tiny little device.
Reason #2 – Hearing aids are not consumer electronics, they are customizable durable medical equipment. Apple sells HUNDREDS OF MILLION iPhones each year and there are only approx 3 million hearing aids sold each year. There are just not enough hearing aids sold to be able to get the technology prices down as low as a smartphone.
Reason #3 – Lack of competition in the hearing aid industry. There are only 6 major manufacturers of hearing aids world wide. Until there is more competition, the prices will continue to be on the higher side.
Reason #4 – No good direct-to-consumer (OTC) products…Yet. Cutting out the middle man (ie. the hearing care professional) will definitely reduce prices of devices. However, being able to create great hearing devices requires more than just slapping a microphone, amplifier, and speaker together and connecting them to your phone. Just ask Doppler Labs who went out of business trying to create a cheap alternative to hearing aids. I guess treating hearing loss well took more money to create a great product than they thought.
Reason #5 – When you buy hearing aids, you are also paying for expert professional care from an audiologist. Hearing aids do not treat hearing loss. The combination of a great hearing aid along with proper fitting, programming, training, and follow-up care are what make a hearing aid perform well. In-fact, the majority of the cost of a hearing aid is due to the fact that you need a professional to ensure you are maximizing the benefit of your hearing aids. However, they are only worth the money if they use “Best Practices” when fitting your hearing aids. Most notably, Real Ear Measures. Want to know more about Real Ear Measures? Check out my video: https://youtu.be/cHR0Oa6I-wY
How to save money on hearing aids: https://youtu.be/cak7mlwHPbY