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July 2017

Cost as a Barrier for Hearing Aid Adoption

Author Affiliations
  • 1School of Medicine, Washington University in St Louis, St Louis, Missouri
  • 2Department of Audiology and Speech Pathology, Consortium Program between University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences and the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, Little Rock
JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2017;143(7):647-648. doi:10.1001/jamaoto.2017.0245

Grundfast and Liu1 recently provided otolaryngologists with an overview of the hearing aid market. While their viewpoint addressed valid points, some points did not accurately reflect the hearing aid market. In this Viewpoint, we hope to provide otolaryngologists with a more accurate representation of hearing aids as part of audiologic service delivery.

Grundfast and Liu1 correctly state that the hearing aid adoption rate is approximately 33%. The authors attribute this “poor” adoption rate primarily to cost, which can exceed $2000 per unit. We believe that cost is not the primary barrier to adoption and provide the reader with data to support this belief.

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