Understanding critical information or keeping up with a conversations with family and friends is essential to independent, daily living. Unfortunately, only one out of every five people diagnosed with hearing loss get adequate help for their hearing loss from hearing aids. Medical Xpress points to a couple of factors that contribute to this statistic, which includes cost, and confusion concerning whether or not hearing aids are covered by their insurance policy.
When I inform my Lake Charles patients that their best option to correct their hearing loss comes from hearing aids, bewilderment at their price is a common reaction. Their first concern is paying for them, and then they ask me, “Does Aetna insurance cover hearing aids?” Whether or not Aetna insurance covers hearing aids depends upon a variety of conditions like plan type, age, and other factors. An added consideration is what level or what percentage of coverage the plan includes.
Most hearing loss patients fall within the age range of Medicare eligibility. This is backed by the National Institute of Deafness and Other Communication Disorders’ (NIDCD) statistics citing that “Approximately one in three people in the United States between the ages of 65 and 74 has hearing loss, and nearly half of those older than 75 have difficulty hearing.” A major problem arises from the fact that Medicare does not provide coverage for hearing aids. However, a number of insurance companies provide a variety of Medicare supplement plans to cover them.
Medicare Advantage (HMO and HMO-POS)
Both of these plans include the health maintenance organization (HMO) option, which includes a primary care physician who manages your care. These plans allow members to choose freely among providers within the network, but benefits and coverage will be limited or restricted outside the network. Aetna’s HMO-POS plans are less restrictive when it comes to choosing providers outside the network and some options do not require a referral. Both of these HMO type supplements provide hearing care in varying degrees.
Medicare Advantage (PPO)
The Medicare Advantage plan is a preferred provider organization (PPO) type insurance package. PPOs do not require selection of a care provider within the preferred care provider (PCP) network and does not require a referral. Coverage for hearing care in varying degrees is also available from this Advantage Medicare supplement.
Medicare Advantage Dual Special Needs (DSNP)
Aetna’s Medicare Advantage Dual Special Needs supplement plans provide the benefit of combining your prescription drug and medical benefits into one plan. Eligibility for this HMO style plan requires meeting specific low-income criteria. This plan also provides varying degrees of hearing care coverage.
Medicare eligible individuals are the primary class of patients who require hearing aids, which complicates coverage eligibility for those not included in this class. Healthy Hearing points out that most private insurance plans do not cover hearing aids for a variety of reasons, but that does not rule out the availability of partial coverage, discounts, or benefits to help pay for your hearing aids.
Aetna’s non-Medicare insurance plans comply with Louisiana’s mandate to provide hearing care for children in all of its available packages. A broad range of coverage variables that include copayment, deductable, and coinsurance are available with optional riders for adults on other plans offered by Aetna. In addition, there are a variety of member discounts and specialized programs available within and outside their membership network. Extensive research will help you determine the available hearing aid coverage options that might or might not be a part of your current plan.
Let Acadian Hearing Service Help You
We understand that it is difficult for most of our patients with hearing loss to pay for hearing aids without some form of financial assistance. To help eliminate some of the confusion and find out whether your Aetna insurance plan covers hearing aids, the Acadian Hearing Services team assists our patients in determining whether your plan covers hearing tests, premium technology, or complete hearing care. Along with checking out your coverage, we also help determine the Aetna insurance copayment, deductible, or coinsurance levels apply to your specific plan as well as any PPO network discounts or restrictions included.
The advice I give to my Lake Charles patients, regardless of whether they are sure or unsure of the coverage available with their Aetna plan, is to fill out Acadian’s online insurance coverage form. Filling out this form allows our team to answer all of the questions they might have concerning the coverage of hearing aids included in their Aetna policy.
Contact us to discover the variety of hearing assessment, balance, and best-in-class hearing technology solutions Acadian Hearing Services has available to our patients in the Lake Charles, LA area.